On Friday, the apex body of Indian football– the All India Football Federation, declared that June 23, the birthday of Indian football legend Pradip Kumar Banerjee, will now be celebrated as ‘AIFF Grassroots Day’.
Starting this June, #IndianFootball ⚽️ will mark legendary PK Banerjee’s birthday as ‘AIFF Grassroots Day’.
We take inspiration from Pradip da’s energy and enthusiasm and vow to constantly develop the game for our future talents.
— Indian Football Team (@IndianFootball) May 12, 2023
Banerjee, who was popularly known as PK, had a brilliant career as a player, having captained the Indian team at the 1960 Rome Olympics, and also achieved huge success as a coach.
AIFF Secretary General Shaji Prabhakaran stated while explaining the reason behind choosing PK’s birthday as AIFF Grassroots Day,
“We often forget Pradip da was a teacher par excellence too. Once he hung up his boots, he took up coaching and for the next 30 years, produced an array of players, who excelled at the national and international levels.
“While his role as a national and a club coach is much discussed, the Indian football fraternity cannot forget PK da’s contribution at the grassroots level, his leadership at the Tata Football Academy, his ability to inspire and fine-tune the budding talents.”