AITMC Web News Team spent an evening with Sports Minister
(Independent Charges) Mr. Madan Mitra at his office (He is also
the MoS Fisheries.). Mr. Mitra, complimented the Chief Minister
Ms. Mamata Banerjee for her initiatives and said Bengal will
always recall her contributions and her name will be engraved in
history next to Job Charnok. The Minister took out some time
from his busy schedule and had an informal chat with the AITMC Web
News Team. Here are the excerpts.
How is Sports Ministry preparing itself for the International friendly match
featuring Lionel Messi?
This is not initiated by the government. It is being organized by private
parties. We have requested the company concerned for subsidized tickets for
school and college students. But be sure that the state government is definitely
going to do something. If a guest comes to our home, we try to provide the
perfect Bengali hospitality to them. We are definitely thinking along this line
regarding both the international teams, Argentina and Venezuela, and certainly
Is Yuva Bharati Krinagan gearing up for this particular match?
Not exactly! Yuva Bharati was being neglected. We have started the process of
restoration. Down the line, we are to have other big matches as well as the
National Athletics Meet in September, and that would require proper facilities.
We have taken the step so that nothing, I repeat, nothing that is unrelated to
sports may take place in this sports complex. Dola (Banerjee) and Soma (Biswas)
are supervising the restoration and renovation process. We are aiming to meet
After assuming office you have taken sincere initiative to help Sushmita and
Murtaza with financial assistance. Any future plans to provide more help?
I tried to provide some aid to them but the situation is far more serious as
many of these players can perform well and bring glory for country if they get
some financial assistance. The problem is, our predecessor has left us with a
debt of around 2000 Crore which is stopping us from initiating many
developmental projects. Still I am trying to help those who are in dire need of financial aid.
Do you plan to incorporate sports as a subject in the education curriculum?
It will be indeed a positive development as then we can expect more budding
sport persons in the making but it will not be an easy job as I can't take such
a big decision and need to have detailed discussion with all concerned
Do you feel there will be any objection from the educational institution in this
Frankly, I don't see any such difference of opinion if we take this matter to
them as they already have sports curriculum in their school but we want to make
it a subject and students will get marks which will be added to the aggregate. I
repeat, this will certainly help us to make sports more effective among the
You have made a suggestion of having a ‘Sports Policy’
similar to the one initiated by Kerala.
Indeed, this is a great initiative taken by the Kerala government which can be
called the pioneer in this regard. I am sincerely planning to introduce a Sports
Policy which will act in Bengal. This will be more like a 'Raksha Kavach' and
inspire the young people to take up sports since they will have a financial
security. I am trying to explore the avenues.
Most recently you were given the charge of fisheries department. How do you see
yourself in the contrasting portfolios?
Honestly, I had no experience of fishery department but being a Bengali we all
have weakness for fish and this is what that primarily inspired me. After
assuming office and taking rounds of fisheries scenario across the state I feel
sad that we require to import fish from other states as we are not only capable
of meeting our needs but can export fish to other states. In fact, we have
enough natural habitat and human resources in Bengal to make this a reality.
The biggest challenge that you face is a hindrance in making the above dream a
Nothing is impossible as we need the attitude and initiative to work. Actually,
the previous government did nothing to develop fisheries and the challenge I
face today is water recourses but I am confident we will find a solution, I make
it a point to look for the same whenever I am on a tour to any of the districts.
Do you have any plans in this direction in future?
There is an idea though right now at a very premature
stage but I am sincerely nurturing it. I want to create a ‘Khaal-bil’. The
idea is to develop a resort with a fishery where the visitors will be able to
catch fish and cook on their own. This will not only promote fish farming but
would become a major tourist attraction in the state.