Sporting fraternity endorses footballer Prasun Banerjee in polls

Kolkata, March 29: A host of sporting icons including the likes of legendary footballer P.K. Banerjee and Hockey Olympian Gurbux Singh Saturday extended support to former Indian soccer captain Prasun Banerjee, who is contesting the Lok Sabha polls on a Trinamool Congress ticket.

Prasun Banerjee, who became the first soccer player to make it to parliament when he won the Howrah Lok Sabha seat in a bypoll last year, is in the fray from the same constituency.

Arjuna Awardee P.K. Banerjee said he was supporting Prasun because he has the ability to work for the welfare of the people.

“I am not supporting him because he is my brother, rather because of his abilities. What he has done in seven months as a MP others can’t even match that in seven years,” said the former India captain and celebrated coach, fondly called P.K.

Olympic gold medalist Singh said it was important for the sporting fraternity to have representation in parliament.

“Much like he played to win in his playing days, I am sure he will do the same as a politician. It is good that sporting personalities are coming to politics,” he said.

Others who endorsed Banerjee include Davis Cupper Akhtar Ali, chess grand master Dibyendu Barua, Asian Games medal wining athlete Soma Biswas, and yesteryear’s soccer stars Gautam Sarkar, Bidesh Bose and Manas Bhattacharya.

Speaking on the occasion, Prasun said if elected he will endeavour to set up a football stadium in Howrah to host I-league matches.

Earlier a host of eminent personalities from the fields of art and culture had endorsed theatre personality Arpita Ghosh who is contesting from Balurghat in South Dinajpur district as a Trinamool candidate.

IANS