R. E. Grant Govan

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Raymond Eustace Grant Govan, CBE[1] (known more often as R.E. Grant Govan and also as REG Govan; December 1891 in Croydon district[2] – January 26, 1940 in Hardwar, United Provinces)[3]was a Delhi-based British industrialist[4] and the first President of the Board of Control for Cricket in India.

He was the Managing Director of Govan Bros. Ltd., a leading business house of the time.[5] The company was managing agents for a number of industrial enterprises. Grant Govan was a keen pilot[6] and the founder of Indian National Airways Ltd, an aviation company formed in 1933 under Govan Bros Ltd. [7][8] Apart from the airline, Govan Bros operated Delhi Flour Mills, set up Sugar Mills-Raza Buland at Rampura, and had a travel department, Govan Agencies (which was sold in 1947).[9] Apart from the airline, Govan had other interests in aviation, like the Delhi Flying Club which he founded in 1928.[6]

Govan was an avid sports enthusiast.[10] He founded the Roshanara Cricket Club in Delhi, named after the nearby tomb of Roshanara Begum, with a group of friends in 1922. The club was officially inaugurated by Marquess of Reading in December 1922.[11] Govan had the distinction of being both the founding President of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) in 1928, a position he held till 1933 and the Cricket Club of India (CCI) in 1933. [5][12] He, along with then BCCI secretary Anthony De Mello, was instrumental in getting the BCCI affiliated to the Imperial Cricket Conference (now International Cricket Council) in 1928.[13]

In 1931 BCCI with Govan at its helm invited the Marylebone Cricket Club to tour India for the first time, with the support of Lord Irwin, the then Viceroy of India.[14] When he died in 1940, Dr. P. Subbaroyan, then President of the (BCCI), issued a statement which read "In the death of Mr. Grant Govan, Indian Cricket has lost a friend ...". [15] After his death, a few of his friends set up the Grant Govan Memorial Homes in Delhi. These are meant to be retirement homes for Anglo-Indians with limited means and were inaugurated by Marchioness of Linlithgow, wife of the then Viceroy of India in October 1940.[16][17]


  1. ^ United Service and Royal Aero Club (Great Britain), Royal Aero Club of the United Kingdom, United Service and Royal Aero Club (1940). Flight International, Volume 37. IPC Transport Press Ltd. Page 30
  2. ^ "Index entry". FreeBMD. ONS. 
  3. ^ National Probate Calendar, accessed through ancestry.com
  4. ^ Ramaswami, N. S. (1975). From Porbandar to Wadekar. Abhinav Publications. p. 224. ISBN 81-7017-015-X. Page 31
  5. ^ a b Vasant Raiji,, Anandji Dossa (1987). CCI & the Brabourne Stadium, 1937-1987. Cricket Club of India. p. 114. Page 22
  6. ^ a b Johnston, E. A. (1995). To organise the air: the evolution of civil aviation and the role of Sir Frederick Tymms, the flying civil servant. Cranfield University Press. p. 271. ISBN 1-871315-46-8. Page 61
  7. ^ (London, England), East India Association (1957). Asian review. East & West Ltd. Page 105
  8. ^ Aeroplane directory of British aviation. 1964: Published by the English Universities for Temple Press. Page 458
  9. ^ Agarwala, Prakash Narain (1991). The role and impact of multinationals. Allied Publishers. p. 440. ISBN 81-7023-288-0. Page 175
  10. ^ Albuquerque, Teresa (1986). To love is to serve: Catholics of Bombay. Heras Institute of Indian History and Culture. p. 124. Page 92
  11. ^ Reed, Sir Stanley (1958). The Times of India directory and year book including who's who. Bennett, Coleman. Page 821
  12. ^ Dass, Jarmani (1969). Maharaja; lives and loves and intrigues of Indian princes: Volume 56 of Orient paperbacks. Allied Publishers. p. 342. Page 44
  13. ^ Advani, A.H. (2000). Business India, Issues 576-582. Page 103
  14. ^ Majumdar, Boria (2006). Lost histories of Indian cricket: battles off the pitch. Routledge. p. 145. ISBN 0-415-35886-8. Page 4
  15. ^ Natesan, G.A. (1940). The Indian review, Volume 41. G.A. Natesan & Co. Page 196
  16. ^ "Grant Govan Memorial Homes". Retrieved 30 March 2011. 
  17. ^ "Midnight's Orphan". Outlookindia.com. Retrieved 30 March 2011.