The reason lies behind- while climbing the summit, base camp is the common place where all the mountaineer starts their journey. Some of them returns, some doesn’t. Similarly, base camp is the place (rather, the stands in gallery) where all the Fans’ club or individual supporter, meet together, keeping their identity intact, interacts and starts the journey. Similarly, Mariners Base Camp is the place where the mariners meets and starts their journey to achieve their ultimate goal- to play the role of 12th man in the stand. Its no more a fans club- the activities, the existence and the visibility of Base Camp starts and ends in the gallery itself- whether its Mohun Bagan ground, Rabindra Sarovar Stadium, Barasat Stadium, Kanchenjungha Stadium or Yuva Bharati Krirangan
Although, the supporters started made their presence in organized way in late 2015 in the home matches after the first I-league winning, Mariners Base Camp started their formal presence in I-league match against Aizawl FC at the Barasat Stadium on the 9th of January 2016- and the gallery witnessed lighting smoke sticks and singing songs with megaphone. The response was overwhelming and crowds welcome base camp. Since then, the common supporters always got its support from the common Mohun Bagan supporters across the globe.
Mariners’ Base Camp continued to draw attention of the mariners and as a result of which their numbers grew rapidly. They started attending all the home matches of the club and continued their gallery activities with innovative variations. The activities started not only limiting to cheering the team while beating drums in unison, or unique chants while other times it was singing the motivational songs like ‘আমাদের সূর্য মেরুন, নাড়ির যোগ সবুজ ঘাসে’ from the movie ‘Egaro’ made on historical IFA Shield winning in 1911 of Mohun Bagan.
They started using northern stands of the Mohun Bagan Ground as their operating area much like the famous ultras group VAK410 of AFC Ajax , who made the section 410 of the Johan Cruyff Arena their zone. Since then during matches, the northern stands of the Mohun Bagan Ground always had a banner, flex or flags on display by Mariners’ Base Camp and frequently caught the attentions of the media.
Mask Protest for Sanjay Sen
All India Football Federation, the governing body of Indian Football, has suspended Mr Sanjoy Sen, the coach of Mohun Bagan for 8 matches to sit in the dug out area, as Mr Sen accused AIFF for not providing enough support to Mohun Bagan to play for international tournaments, while Mohun Bagan was one of the contender for I League title. To support Mr Sanjoy Sen, Mariners’ Base Camp distributed 20,000 masks of Mr. Sen in the stadium, to show the solidarity. The entire stadium were wearing the masks, a strong message was sent out to the governing body as ‘You can ban our coach but the entire Stadium is Sanjoy Sen now’. This was an unique activity and probably the first to be seen in Indian football.
On 1st September, 2019 they displayed a giant tifo and messages for the opponent during the famous Kolkata Derby, which was covered by various local and national media networks and leading ultras group across the world.
Mask for Sony Norde
We did the similar activities in 2017, when key player Sony Norde missed the match against the arch rival East Bengal, in Yuva Bharati Krirangan. The man of the match, DipandaDicka took the award wearing the mask of Norde.
Apart from the regular match day, Mariners Base Camp has always cheered up the football squad in non-match days as well- whether its first or last day of practice of the season, or on July 29, Mohun Bagan day, the auspicious day to celebrate the historical winning of IFA Shield against East Yorkshire Regiment in 1911.
The green and maroon players always have extended their gratitude towards the base camp for being the 12th man- participating in Viking clap, or sharing various shades of Base Camp zone from their social media handles.
Current administration and future plans:
Mariners Base Camp is run on the contributions from common Mohun Bagan Supporters across the globe. Based on the contribution and collection, we plan for future activities. We need your active support to flourish the gallery more colorful- whether its financial support, or active/passive participate in the preparation of the ground work activities. If you are unable to do any activity, then also you are most welcome to do some activities using your smartphone. Remember, everyone of us can make it great. Please feel free to contact us in the phone number, social media handles or email. We need your support badly!