Match fever grips DYFI ahead of India-Australia final, march across Bengal bleeds blue
Telegraph | 20 November 2023
Political parties of Bengal paid tribute to the Indian men's cricket team on Sunday, in the wake of the Men in Blue reaching the ODI World Cup final for the first time in 12 years.
The CPM, the BJP and Trinamul extended their support through screenings and jersey displays, besides statements of support from leaders.
However, the CPM youth wing DYFI, stood out for its unique way of showcasing its support to Team India.
On the 17th day of their Insaaf Yatra across Bengal, young leaders like DYFI state secretary Minakshi Mukherjee and CPM district secretary Jamir Molla, and a large number of DYFI activists wore the blue jerseys of Team India as a way of extending their support.
The special yatra started from Sagardighi, went through Nabagram, and continued till Panchgram.
The two-month march that began earlier this month generally starts every day at 8am and continues till 9pm. However, on World Cup Sunday, it started at 7am and wound up at 2pm.
Mukherjee said: “Besides being politicians we are also the country's youth who are expected to have the Cricket World Cup fever like the rest of the country. The workers will go back early and back the Blues.”
She added: “Today we are paying tribute to the stalwarts like Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Md Shami, and to the entire team."
"One cannot sell the assets of the nation to crony capitalists and claim to be a nationalist at the same time. There are 11 warriors defending the nation on the pitch today, and we have vowed to do the same in the streets against crony capitalism, corruption, and communalism,” Mukherjee said.
Molla said that the intense emotions of the Indians around the World Cup were justified considering the reputation of the nation in world cricket.
He said: "Our workers, like every Indian, are running very high on emotions and on Sunday we would prefer sitting in front of the television sets, rooting for the Men in Blue.”
When asked if wearing the blue jersey was a deliberate attempt to reach out to the youth, Mukherjee said: “Not at all. Ours is entirely a youth wing and it is expected that we will watch the World Cup."
In various districts of Bengal, Trinamul and the BJP alike organised mass viewings on giant screens and extended their support to the team on Sunday.
Trinamul's MLA from Kandi Apurba Sarkar said: “The entire nation is in the grip of the World Cup fever and we are no exception. Our party workers have installed a giant screen at Gokarna Park for the general public and also organised various events in various parts of the state.”
The BJP’s Burdwan district chief Abhijit Tah said: “We have been instructed to arrange for giant screens and TVs for the youths of our area. We will also share sweets with people if India wins.”