And a Rs. 4,000 arrear is still due against the name that a person no less than Sachin Tendulkar has described as the best Indian captain he had ever played under.
Spotted for his cricketing talents, Dhoni was recruited by the railways in March 2001 and put in a three-year service in the Kharagpur division of the South Eastern Railways.
"We would feel honored to have the opportunity to return his money. But our apprehension is that the gesture might be taken amiss," a ministry official said.
Talking about Dhoni's days as a railway employee, his roommate at Kharagpur, Deepak Kumar Singh, said, "Besides his passion for cricket, his main worry those days was about finding spares for an old Bullet-350 motorcycle that was lying in a state of disrepair at his home in Ranchi."
Shubhra Ganguly, wife of the late Animesh Kumar Ganguly, divisional manager at Kharagpur in 2001, said, "Dhoni remains grateful that my husband gave him his first break. He made it a point to attend our daughter Agnijita's marriage reception in February 2007."