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Football is a popular sport in the Caribbean. Pixabay

By Dr. Kumar Mahabir

Indians in India and the Indian Diaspora love cricket. However, it seems that football – also called soccer – is not their game of preference. Football is a popular sport in the Caribbean. But there is not a single Indo-Trinidadian in the national football team in Trinidad in the Caribbean, although some sports historians mention the names Son Ramroop and Bobby Sookram.

In Guyana, like Trinidad, there is not a single Indo-Guyanese (Indian) man on the national team. However, in the Guyana national women’s football team, there are two Indian women footballers: Brittany Persaud and Kiana Khedoo.

In neighboring Suriname, however, there is a difference. Surinamese (Hindustani) men have played on the national team in international games.

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The following are HIGHLIGHTS of a ZOOM public meeting held recently (31/01/21) on the topic “INDIANS in West INDIAN national FOOTBALL.” The Pan-Caribbean meeting was hosted by the Indo-Caribbean Cultural Centre (ICC). It was chaired and moderated by Bindu Deokinath Maharaj of Trinidad.

The speakers were RAMESH RAMDHAN (Trinidad), a football (soccer) referee who supervised the Japan-Croatia match during the 1998 FIFA World Cup in France; ASHOK BAINNATHSAH (Suriname), administrator of the Surinamese Football Association (SVB) and Competition Manager since 2013; THAKOERDIEN LUNA HAROEN (Suriname) who scored goals against many countries, including Mexico, Guyana, and Trinidad and Tobago; PRISHAD POETRA PARMESSAR (Suriname), player, goalkeeper, a referee with national football teams, and a licensed coach with a degree; and QUARAISY NAGESSERSING MOHAMMED (Suriname), a sports journalist who reported on World Cup football matches.

RAMESH RAMDHAN from Trinidad said:

RAMESH RAMDHAN (Trinidad), a football referee.

“I believe the question of why Indian footballers are rear on national teams stems from a socio-cultural issue. Historically, there has been a significant lack of strong role models in the field. This may be due to the negative stigma that has been previously attached to persons who play football. To play football, you were expected to be strong and brutal, although this is not necessarily the case.

In secondary schools, many young Indian footballers excel. However, there exists a problem at this stage of the young Indian footballers’ life. Indian parents want their children to focus on education.”

ASHOK BAINNATHSAH from Suriname said:

ASHOK BAINNATHSAH (Suriname), administrator of the Surinamese Football Association (SVB) and Competition Manager since 2013.

“The first Hindustani football club in Suriname was Jai Hind which had only one non-Hindustani. After Jai Hind came Amarjoti (with 17 Hindustani players), Shanti Dell, KD (with 21 players), and Takdier Boys (with 20 players). Most of these clubs had 80% of Hindustani players.

I can tell you that between 1975 and 1982, three Hindustani footballers played for the national team of Suriname. At the beginning of 2000, two Hindustani footballers played for the national team.

The 14 clubs in the first division now have four Hindustani players. In the second division, Deva Boys has no Hindustani player and Kamal Dewaker has only one. The other clubs in the second division have four Hindustani footballers, making a total of five players.

Suriname has a youth competition that starts with U-9 till U-20. In that competition, there are a lot of young Hindustani players. Some of them are very good, but by the age of 16-18, they choose to study instead.

Overall, Hindustani football players don’t reach the top because they have other goals in life. They are dedicated to their family and prefer to go into the professions or in business. In Holland, it is the same pattern.


THAKOERDIEN LUNA HAROEN (Suriname) who scored goals against many countries.

“I was a footballer in the National Junior Championship against Puerto Rico in 1973, and a senior football player from 1973 to 1984. I played in the Suriname national team and scored goals in competitions against many countries, including Mexico, Guyana, and Trinidad and Tobago.”


PRISHAD POETRA PARMESSAR (Suriname), player, goalkeeper, a referee with national football teams, and a licensed coach with a degree.

“The two best-known footballers of Indian- (Hindustani-) descent to play at the highest level are Vikash Dhorasoo (France) and Surinamese-born, Aron Winter (Holland).

In Suriname, we have had some Hindustani footballers of which goalkeeper Saliek is the most popular. He played for Jai Hind and Leo Victor (with which team he won the league title) and was also selected for the national team. We also had one head coach on the national team during the ’80s named Ro Phoelsing.”

ALSO READ: The Impact Of Chinese, Hispanic & Haitian Migrants On Trinidad, Guyana And Suriname


QUARAISY NAGESSERSING MOHAMMED (Suriname), a sports journalist.

“Hindustanis in Suriname have a special love for football and wrestling. Even though we have a lot of Hindustani-owned clubs, this ethnic group is invisible in the highest levels of the Surinamese football competition. This is a little shocking because when we look at the district competitions, there are numerous active Hindustani teams.”

This has not always been this way. In 1960 up to the ’80s, there were some Hindustani teams that performed very well, and even performed in the highest competition, e.g. Takdier Boys, Jai Hind, Kamal Dewaker and Perkash.”


There are two types of welcome bonuses - deposit and no deposit.

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More and more sports betting sites are appearing on the Internet. They are especially popular in India due to the prevalence of cricket. Users from this country constantly use the services of sports providers and have the right to choose the best.

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Devon Hamper/wikipedia

Books that you can read in 2022.

Reading allows you to gain a deeper understanding of the world around you, stimulating your creativity and keeping your mind engaged.

A list of new releases published by Aleph:

What the Heck Do I Do With My Life?: How to Flourish in Our Turbulent Times

Many causes, including technology, climate change, demographics, and inequality, will cause our planet to change more in this century than in all of human history. Extreme change is offering unparalleled opportunities for individuals, companies, and society, as well as a 'adaptive challenge.' Those who can adapt to a fast-paced, complex, dynamic, and unpredictably changing world will prosper. Those who are unable to do so will suffer immensely.

Also read: Books to read in January

There are obvious signals that we need new ways of thinking about the world and our place in it all over the place. Our old ways of thinking about education, lifestyle, success, and happiness are no longer valid. What are the changes in the workplace? When future jobs are still being invented, how can you know what talents will be useful? Will 'jobs' even exist in the future, or will we be relegated to a world of projects and freelance work? What do you do with all of this and more?

What the Heck Do I Do With My Life? is a book on figuring out what you want to do with your life. Ravi Venkatesan argues that effective adaptation in the twenty-first century necessitates a "paradigm shift," a new attitude, new talents, and new techniques. Ravi also considers how, rather than drifting along like a piece of driftwood, we will need to live life more consciously, making deliberate decisions about who we are, what we do, and how we live.

Also read: Book Review: Philip: The Final Portrait

Neeraj Chopra: From Panipat to The Podium

On the night of August 7, 2021, a billion Indians' long-held desire came true as Neeraj Chopra won gold in the javelin in the Tokyo Olympics 2020. The wait, on the other hand, had been extremely long. In reality, this is India's first individual gold medal in athletics since the modern Olympic Games began. The entire country showered him with affection when he did it in his signature flair and smile. The media went crazy, and the youth discovered a new source of inspiration. People flocked to get their photos taken with him, and businesses discovered a new wonder-ambassador. Neeraj Chopra: I'm Neeraj Chopra, and I'm From Panipat to the Podium begins in a small village in Panipat and tells the story of his formative years, which were marked by restricted resources and opportunities. It takes readers through his journey to Panchkula and then to the national camp in his quest to conquer the world.

My Cricket Hero: XII Indians on their XII favourite Cricketers

Pieces from Keki Daruwalla on Polly Umrigar, Fredun De Vitre on Chandu Borde, Gulu Ezekiel on Eknath Solkar, Hemant Kenkre on Sunil Gavaskar, Amrit Mathur on Salim Durani, Kersi Meher-Homji on Vijay Hazare and many more make for a great lockdown read.

It's A Wonderful World: A Memoir

His book is a provocative read that makes us wish we had a life like his. Khalid Ansari's life has been an exciting and purposeful journey in service to his fellow human beings, beginning with his birth in Mumbai's impoverished Madanpura to a father who began his life as an orphan and a mother from a poor household. Ansari has attempted to depict some highlights of a splendored life that he has been lucky to experience, catching stars while chasing rainbows in this 'donkey's tale'. It's been la vie en rose for him, from founding newspapers and magazines to representing his country at the United Nations, accompanying dignitaries on state visits, covering cricket Test matches, nine Olympics, Commonwealth and Asian Games, travelling the world, and being awarded the Padma Shri award. The author has worked hard to keep this narrative from devolving into a 'I-did-this-did-that' pat-on-the-back, shabash!' By 'spicing' it up with dollops of frothy stories and self-critical bon mots, he has attempted a discourse on the meaning of life, the 'right path,' and the like, even as he has attempted a discourse on the purpose of life, the 'right route,' and the like.

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