Ten-man East Bengal held Mohun Bagan to a 1-1 in their fifth outing of the ONGC I-League at Yuba Bharati Krirangan in Kolkata on Saturday night.
Bhaichung Bhutia gave Moun Bagan the lead and Syed Rahim Nabi levelled the score towards the end of the first half.
Mohun Bagan have three points from five matches compared to East Bengal's seven.
Despite the draw, East Bengal gave a creditable performance as they had to play almost the entire second half with a man short after right full-back Surkumar Singh was given marching orders by referee Pradeep Kumar from Tamil Nadu for hitting Mohun Bagan medio Rakesh Masih.
Trouble started a couple of minutes after the changeover when Surkumar, after being roughly tackled by Masih, hit the TFA cadet when the ball was not in play.
Masih was also shown the yellow card.
East Bengal custodian Subrata Pal and central defender Suley Musah too were cautioned for arguing with referee after Surkumar was shown the red card.
Mohun Bagan, yet to come up with a win in this edition of the I-League, started in whirlwind fashion and forged ahead in the very second minute.
Following a counterattack, Mohun Bagan midfielder Ishfaq Ahmed, who was adjudged Man of the Match, sent a nice pass to Bhutia who darted inside the East Bengal box and buried his shot into the back of the net.
East Bengal though never lost heart and effected a number of goal-bound moves.
First Surkumar's shot from a Yusif Yakubu pass narrowly missed the mark and then the Ghanaian's effort was blocked by Mohun Bagan keeper Shilton Paul in the 35th minute.