September 28, 2013
Khel Samman: State Govt felicitates sporting luminaries for making Bengal proud
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee felicitated 63 sportspersons of Bengal for their valuable contribution in different forms of sports, at a programme organized by the State Sports Department in Netaji Indoor Stadium on Monday, 28 September, 2013. Several junior and senior sportspersons were present at the occasion.
26 sports personalities received `Khel Samman` awards, 12 persons received `Krira Guru` awards and 20 persons received `Banglar Gourav` awards.
Former skipper of the Indian cricket team, and a heartthrob of Bengalis, Sourav Ganguly and ace tennis star Leander Paes were awarded with prestigious `Khel Ratna` awards for life-time achievement to their respective sports.
Several other eminent sports personalities, representing various fields – cricket, football, tennis, table tennis, volleyball, mountaineering, swimming – were also honoured by the Chief Minister on the occasion. Their brilliant performances over time have made the state proud and hence the contribution deserved a recognition.
Krira Guru Awards were presented to Subhas Bhowmick, Amal Dutta, Prasun Banerjee, Manoranjan Bhattacharya, Syed Naeemuddin, Kuntal Roy among others.
Alok Mukherjee, Dinesh Basu, Gautam Sarkar, Bhaskar Ganguly , Utpal Chatterjee, Dibbendu Barua, Jhulan Goswami, Soma Biswas. Joydip Karmakar, Mampi Das, Sambaran Banerjee, Nimai Goswami, Shyam Thapa, Mohua das, Dola Banerjee and many more others were honoured at the occasion.
All the recipients of the sporting honours expressed their gratitude towards the state government and thanked the Chief Minister for taking the for recognizing and felicitating their contributions.
On the pious occasion, Mamata Banerjee announced the formation of a residential football academy, first of its kind in Bengal, which will be sponsored by West Bengal Sports Council.
Apart from bestowing honours, the government also distributed cheques towards financial aid for 4395 clubs across the state to boost the sporting infrastructure.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said, “Sportspersons from Bengal have achieved recognition in different parts of the world, so even I feel proud to felicitate them. “
“ Sports was an isolated discipline in Bengal previously, but I have requested my ministers to form a new Youth and Sports Policy“, she added.