RG Baruah

Radha Govinda Baruah (1900-1977), popularly known as RG, was a keen sports lover. He is mostly remembered for single handedly building the Nehru stadium in Guwahati. A wrestler and body-builder in his earlier days, RG was a visionary who realized the necessity of a state-of-the-art stadium in Guwahati.

Although he faced stiff opposition from different quater at the time of begining the construction work of the stadium but he was able to organize a small group which ensured his dream to fulfill. Recalling those days, Pulin Das, one of Baruah's most trusted person, had once said," We learnt a lot of things from RG. He was a very disciplined person and there was hardly a day, whether it was sunny or rainy, when RG didn't come to my house at 5 o'clock in the morning to take me to Ulubari to supervise the work of the proposed stadium. The stadium was constructed in a stinking municipal dump yard and initially it was a very difficult task for us to stay there too long. But he supervised every aspect of the construction despite all odds." RG even pumped in money from his pocket to tide over the financial crisis and organized events like wrestling mania of the Dara Singh kind to raise funds. RG was associated with several sports associations which included Gauhati Sports Association where he was the founder president, Assam Hockey Association, Assam Cricket Association, Assam Badminton Association, Assam Flying club etc. In 1939, RG, also known as 'Lion Man', launched leading English daily of the state - The Assam Tribune. He was honoured with a postage stamp in 2000.


Nurul Amin

Nurul Amin, the noted sports organizer from Nagaon, took Assam sports to new heights with his unmatched organizing skills. A law graduate, Amin (1919-1991) could have easily become a good lawyer and there was opportunity too as his father Khan Bahadur Nuruddin was a renowned advocate. But his love for sports took him in another direction. Amin was among the few sports organizers of the state who were popular among officials of different national federations. He was the president of the All India Football Federation between 1975 and 1980. Before that, Amin was seen regularly with the Indian soccer team as a manager and was also part of the 1962 Asian Games soccer squad which won the gold medal at Jakarta. Nurul Amin was the first sports organizer from Assam who attended the FIFA meet held at Mantril, 1976. A keen follower of sports, Amin was associated with many state associations which included Assam Football Association, Assam Cricket Association, Assam Table Tennis Association, All Assam Tennis Association and Assam Olympic Association. Amin, the founder secretary of the Nagaon Sports Association, was also instrumental in introducing the Independence cup, the oldest soccer tournament of Assam, and took it to great heights with some innovative ideas.

The organizer earned special place among sports lovers of the state because of his zero tolerance on indiscipline. He never compromised with indiscipline among players, officials or organizers and whenever required he didn't hesitate to take a tough stand to keep things in order.


Pulin Das

Pulin Das, popularly known as Pulinda, was born on November 1, 1918. Das was a multifaceted personality. An athlete, journalist, sports organizer, sports commentator - he set his foot on every sporting arena. As a player, he represented Assam in Ranji trophy in 1949 against Holkar and against Orissa in 1950. Das was the founder secretary of the Assam Cricket Association for a year. Later, he resumed the chair again from 1969-1979. Apart from Assam Cricket Association, Das was associated with several sports organizations which included Assam Football Association, Assam Table Tennis Association, Gauhati Town club, Assam Badminton Association, Gauhati Sports Association etc. Besides taking the state team to various National Level tournaments, Pulinda also took the initiative to take the Assam Table Tennis team to Colombo in 1956. Das was a pioneer in the field of sports journalism in Assam too. He worked several years for The Assam Tribune and also contributed regularly in a Kolkata-based newspaper - The Statesman. As a broadcaster, Pulinda was the first to do running commentary in Assamese of a football match for All India Radio. A close associate of RG Baruah, Das also contributed a lot during the construction of Nehru stadium. The longest serving sports organizer of Assam died in 2014 at the age of 96.


Nripendra Narayan Singha

Nripendra Narayan Singha was born in the year 1925. A renowned footballer in his days, Nipenda, as his close associates call him, was also a good football referee. He officiated at many Santosh trophy matches, including the final in 1964 between Bengal and Railways. As a sports administrator, he worked with many sports associations, including Assam Football Association, where he was the general secretary from 1979 to 1984. He was the chairman of the Assam Football Association's (AFA) referee board for several years from 1956. Nripenda was instrumental in setting up the State Sports Council of Assam and served the organization as joint secretary from 1960 to 1990. During that period Assam was a leading force in the All India Rural Games from which several international star sportspersons emerged. Loved and respected for his amicable nature Singha passed the most valuable period of his life at State Sports Council of Assam and offered his service by organizing various sporting activities.


Nalini Mohan Gupta

Born in 1886 at Sylhet, Nalini Mohan Gupta was a father figure of sports in Silchar. During his playing days, Gupta was equally good in football and hockey. He was part of the British Military team that participated in the IFA Shield in 1916-17. Gupta also played in Beighton Cup representing state team. He was among the few organizers on whose initiative India Club, the premier institution of Silchar and the oldest club of Assam, was formed in 1900. Gupta also led India Club in different hockey championships. He was associated with many sports organizations - both as player and as an organizer. His organizing skill was superb and many felt that the sport scenario of Silchar would see a major change unless he had not died at a young age of 49. Silchar District Sports Association honoured the noted sports organizer by organising a football championship in his name in 1962 - the event is still a premier soccer competition in southern Assam.


Jitendra Chandra Dasgupta

Jitendra Chandra Dasgupta, popularly known as 'Batuda', was a legendary sports figure in Silchar. Born in 1913, Dasgupta had great passion for tennis and had won several titles which included three consecutive state championships (1963-65) and a hard court tennis championship at Sylhet in 1936. Dasgupta was associated with many sports organizations in Silchar. But his contribution to establish a tennis court and premier organization - Silchar Town club, will be fondly remembered forever. Later, he became the secretary of the Silchar District Sports Association also. Dasgupta expired in 1998.


Animesh Ganguly

There are very few sports organizers in Assam who were also a very good sports person. Animesh Ganguly was one of them. He was not only a good soccer player in his days but after quitting the game he spent rest of the life to promote this game.

Animeshda, every one called him, although started his career as a footballer in Gauhati Town club in mid 1920’s but very soon switched over to Maharana, another renowned club in the state. A short in stature, he was a player of high quality. Ganguly turned up for Maharana in several top level tournaments that included IFA Shield in Kolkata too. In 1940, Maharana club displayed a spirited performance against Mohammedan Sporting in IFA shield. The game was ended 1-1 draw on the first day. But excessive foul play –-Ganguly lost three teeth after a frustrated Jumma Khan elbowed him –-and bad referring saw Maharana go down fighting 0-1 in the replay next day.

After hanging up the boot, Ganguly took the responsibility to make Maharana club a formidable outfit of Assam. He even travelled to different parts of the state to spot talent. His personality and organizing abilities earned respect from every quater. A confirmed bachelor, Ganguly felt genuine pleasure in talks and conversations relating only to his club and possibilities of the young players of his team. He was also actively associated with Gauhati Town club and Assam Football Association. Since the inception, Ganguly was the chairman of the selection committee of the Assam Football Association. GSA later gave him life membership too.

With his demise in 1974, Assam lost a rarer soccer saint.