This city always welcomes him with open arms. He also never feels that he is a stranger, a guest in the city on the banks of the river Buriganga. Sourav Ganguly is coming to Dhaka from that playing career. Came again yesterday for a short visit.
But this time his Jhatika tour has nothing to do with cricket. This time the reason for his visit to Dhaka is to participate in the promotional program of ICICI Bank of India. Former Indian captain and former president of Indian Cricket Board Sourav participated in the event at Intercontinental Hotel in the evening.
Earlier in the afternoon, he attended the opening ceremony of the Dhaka North City Corporation Mayor’s Cup at Westin Hotel in the capital. As expected, the Maharaj of Calcutta took all the light towards himself. A video film made about him was shown on the occasion. The song ‘Dada We Love You’ sung by Usha Uthuppe plays in the background.
Sourav, who led Bangladesh’s debut Test opponent India, is overwhelmed by the love of the people of this country. He said, ‘Every time I come here, I get so much love from people that I don’t understand whether it is India or Bangladesh.’ While thanking Mayor Atiqul Islam, the popular host of ‘Dadagiri’ Saurabh said, ‘There is no alternative to sports to build a drug-free society.’
The memory of Bangladesh-India historic Test match on November 10, 2000 is still indelible in Sourav’s memory. It was his first Test as India captain. Bangladesh also had their debut Test.
Sourav said, ‘My name is associated with the cricket history of Bangladesh. I captained the first Test in Bangladesh. Remember, there was no new cricket stadium then. Bangladesh took the lead in the first innings at the Bangabandhu National Stadium. Back in the dressing room after the first innings, I felt like I would lose the first Test under my leadership. But we won the match back.’
He also brought up the issue of organizing Bangladesh-India Dibaratri Pink Test at Eden in Kolkata while he was the President of the Indian Cricket Board.
Dhaka North City Mayor Atiqul Islam announced Sourav as the Mayor’s Cup ambassador and said, ‘We are overwhelmed by Sourav Ganguly’s arrival. When I told him you have to come here to build a drug free society, he said I will come, but not take a single penny. He will be the goodwill ambassador of the Mayor’s Cup.
Former captain of Bangladesh team Rakibul Hasan, Gazi Ashraf Hossain, Akram Khan, Athar Ali Khan, Khaled Masood, former footballer Kaiser Hamid and national volleyball team captain Harshit Biswas were present at the event.
At the beginning of the program, the mayor’s cup song was played along with the dance, ‘Khelye Matbe…Kheler Munda…Jambe Ebar Khel Mayor Cupe….’ Then some videos of cricketer Sourav Ganguly appeared on the screen. His arrival on stage through flames was also quite dramatic. Sourav attended the ICICI Bank function at Intercontinental Hotel in the evening. He was accompanied by his wife Donna Ganguly. Maharaj will return to Calcutta today.