Former Bengal all-rounder Laxmi Ratan Shukla has donated three months’ salary as a Member of Legislative Assembly (West Bengal) and three months’ pension received by the BCCI to the Chief Minister’s relief fund to help fight the COVID-19 crisis.
Shukla, now a Minister of State (Youth Services and Sports) with the West Bengal government, also helped the groundsmen of the Maidan - a hub of cricket and football clubs in Kolkata - by donating rice and pulses.
“In 1999, I had helped with donations to the central government during the Kargil war. It is my duty now as minister and also a responsible citizen of the country. Today, I also helped the Maidan groundsmen with rice and pulses,” Shukla told IANS on Friday. “We need to fight this together. The groundsmen also need help. I have played for a decent amount of time and now since I can help them, I should,” he added.
Shukla had earlier urged the people of his State to come out and support the cause. “In these difficult times, did my bit, humbly donated my three months’ salary to CM’s relief fund. Please come forward and stand in support with one and all,” he said on Twitter .
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Shukla played 137 first-class matches for Bengal and East Zone, and also represented India in three One-Day Internationals. He turned out for the Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League.
The total number of positive cases in West Bengal has risen to 10 after a 66-year-old man, admitted to a private hospital here, tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday. India has seen the number of positive cases shoot up to over 750 with as many as 20 deaths.
On Wednesday, the Cricket Association of Bengal had announced it would donate ₹25 lakh to the State Administration in Corona Aid with president Avishek Dalmiya donating ₹5 lakh from his own pocket. CAB office bearers - secretary Snehashis Ganguly, vice-president Naresh Ojha and joint secretary Debabrata Das - donated ₹1 lakh each. Treasurer Debasish Ganguly’s club South Suburban also showed its intent to donate.
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