KOLKATA, India – From his former rivals N Srinivasan and Sharad Pawar to the current BCCI heavyweights, the Indian cricket fraternity yesterday bade an emotional farewell to Jagmohan Dalmiya, who was cremated with full state honours and gun salute.The 75-year-old talismanic cricket administrator passed away at 08.45hrs Sunday night following a massive cardiac arrest at the BM Birla Heart Research Centre where he was admitted on Thursday evening.
The news sent shockwaves across the cricket fraternity who mourned the loss of the man who is credited for making the sport popular and rich, prompting West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to announce a full state honours for the departed Dalmiya.
India’s top cricket administrators including, BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur, ICC chairman Srinivasan, IPL chairman Rajeev Shukla, former presidents Sharad Pawar, Shashank Manohar gathered to pay their homage at Eden Gardens, where his body was kept for more than two hours.
The chief minister came around at 15:00hrs as it was time for the state guard of honour followed by a three-round gun salute by 10 Kolkata Police officials.
A senior member chanting ‘Dalmiya Amar Rahe’ (long live Dalmiya) put the national flag on the body as it began its final journey to Keoratala crematorium.
Banerjee, former India captain Sourav Ganguly along with state ministers and other CAB officials went to the crematorium to pay their homage as a pall of gloom descended on the city.
“I will miss Jagmohan Dalmiya’s ready laugh, says Sunil Gavaskar.
His son and daughter performed the last rites by placing the body on the wooden pyre with sandalwood at 16:00hrs.
Earlier, accompanied by Ravi Shastri, BCCI secretary Thakur was the first to come and the duo first went to Dalmiya’s 10 Alipore Road residence from where the Team India director left for the national camp in Bengaluru.
Dalmiya’s last journey began from his residence at 12:15hrs before arriving at his ‘second home’ Eden Gardens around 13:00hrs accompanied by son Avishek, daughter Vaishali, his wife Chandralekha and other relatives. (PTI).