Former skipper Bhaichung Bhutia and current Blue Tigers captain Sunil Chhetri mourned the demise of the legendary footballer Subimal Goswami.
The former Indian skipper, who was popularly known as 'Chuni' Goswami, died on Thursday due to cardiac arrest at the age of 82 in Kolkata, West Bengal.
Taking to Twitter Bhutia wrote, "Rest in peace Chuni da."
Rest in peace chuni da pic.twitter.com/r8cTyS6wRt— Bhaichung Bhutia (@bhaichung15) April 30, 2020
Chhetri reflected on Goswami's versatility as he played two sports --cricket and football.
"We've lost one of the leading lights of Indian sport today. Not too many can boast of being top-notch in two different sports. You played your part to the fullest, rest well, Chuni sir. Strength to the family," Chhetri tweeted.
President Ramnath Kovind also mourned the demise of India’s legendary footballer.
We’ve lost one of the leading lights of Indian sport today. Not too many can boast of being top-notch in two different sports. You played your part to the fullest, rest well, Chuni sir. Strength to the family.— Sunil Chhetri (@chetrisunil11) April 30, 2020
“Sad to hear about the passing of Chuni Goswami. In his demise India’s football fans have lost a legend. A versatile sportsman, he was a star in his own right. My heartfelt condolences to his family, friends and admirers,” he tweeted.
Sad to hear about the passing of Chuni Goswami. In his demise India’s football fans have lost a legend. A versatile sportsman, he was a star in his own right. My heartfelt condolences to his family, friends and admirers.— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) April 30, 2020
The All India Football Federation (AIFF) also condoled the demise of former captain Subimal Goswami, who died on Thursday at the age of 82.
AIFF President Praful Patel expressed grief over the demise of Goswami and saidf that the latter's "contribution to Indian Football will never be forgotten".
"It's sad to hear that Chuni-da, one of India's greatest footballers, is no more. His contribution to Indian Football will never be forgotten. I share the grief," AIFF's official website quoted Patel as saying.
"He will stay synonymous with the golden generation of Indian football. Chuni-da, you will remain alive in our hearts," he added.
On the other hand, General Secretary of AIFF Kushal Das said it is a huge loss not only for Indian football but for sports in India overall.
"Chuni Goswami will be alive in his achievements. He was a legendary footballer and someone who has been an inspiration to so many generations. May his soul Rest in Peace," Das said.
"Indian Football will always remember him as the captain of the 1962 Asian Games gold medal-winning squad. He was a versatile sportsman, having also represented Bengal in the Ranji Trophy. It's a huge loss not just for Indian Football, but sports in India overall," he added.
After making his debut in 1958, Goswami represented India in 36 official International matches, captaining in 16 of them, and netting 13 goals.
Goswami won the Arjuna Award in 1963 and was awarded the prestigious Padma Shri Award in 1983. Over the years, he helped Bagan win the Calcutta Football League nine times, the IFA Shield and the Durand Cup five times each, the Rovers Cup thrice, the Dr. HK Mookerjee Shield five times, Babu Kuer Singh Shield thrice, and the Ananda Bazar Centenary Trophy once. He won 14 trophies for Mohun Bagan as captain.
BCCI mourns the death of Subimal ‘Chuni’ Goswami, an all-rounder in the truest sense. He captained the Indian national football team & led to them to gold in the 1962 Asian Games. He later played first-class cricket for Bengal & guided them to the final of Ranji Trophy in 1971-72 pic.twitter.com/WgXhpoyLaB— BCCI (@BCCI) April 30, 2020
In 2005, he was awarded the Mohun Bagan Ratna and was bestowed the Banga Bibhusan in 2013. The Indian postal department also honoured Goswami with a commemorative stamp on his 82nd birthday earlier this year.
We’re deeply saddened by the passing of former player and club Legend Sri Subimal (Chuni) Goswami, aged 83.— Mohun Bagan (@Mohun_Bagan) April 30, 2020
Our thoughts and prayers are with his family during this difficult time.
Rest in peace, Chuni Goswami. pic.twitter.com/H7yERNYNLN
He suffered cardiac arrest thrice in 14 minutes: Goswami's son
Subimal "Chuni" Goswami came for a routine check-up to a city hospital on Thursday morning and by evening he had suffered three cardiac arrests in 14 minutes to breathe his last and end an era, his son said.
"He had breakfast. Then we got him to the hospital. He was brought here for a routine check-up. He had lunch and even took a nap in the afternoon. But around 5 pm, he suffered three heart attacks in 14 minutes," said a crestfallen Sudipto.
Goswami, who died at the age of 82, is survived by his wife and Sudipto.
Goswami was also battling underlying ailments, including sugar, and prostrate and nerve problems.
Goswami had to be given insulin daily and due to the Covid-19 lockdown, his medical supervisor was not able to attend to him on a regular basis.
"I don't have words at this point, feeling lonely," said Sudipto. The Indian postal department also honoured Goswami with a commemorative stamp on his 82nd birthday earlier this year.