Kolkata: Bengal Governor M K Narayanan described himself as a Mohun Bagan fan, as the club began its centennary year`s celebrations by releasing a stamp of their 1911 team who defeated British Army`s East Yorkshire Regiment to win the IFA Shield for the first time.
Celebrated as `Mohun Bagan Day`, the 121-year-old club also awarded the `Ratna` to the family members of the 10 triumphant footballers, remembering the glory 99 years ago which is described as India`s first victory of independence battle -- on football field.
It was on July 29, 1911, Sibdas Bhaduri-led Mohun Bagan played barefoot and beat the British side 2-1 to win the maiden Shield.
With their stadium gallery filled upto the brim, Mohun Bagan celebrated the day in style as the programmed kicked off in the afternoon with three exhibition games involving junior and former players, artists and the media.
The special highglight of the programme was the release of a special cover by Governor Narayanan with former football greats PK Banerjee, Chuni Goswami, Sailen Manna in attendance.
Narayanan said the name Mohun Bagan strikes a chord.
"I do not belong to Kolkata but the name strikes a chord whether you are here or outside. I always follow Mohun Bagan-East Bengal rivalry and get disappointed when they lose.”
"It`s a heritage club of India, one of the oldest in Asia and world. Mohun Bagan after their victory in IFA Shield proved that Indian football is second to none," he said.