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Over Rs.2,00,000 collected for the Blind National A in 24 hours!

by Sagar Shah - 03/02/2018

The National Premier Blind 2018 had no sponsors. No one came forward. A sport where the blind compete on equal terms with the visioned players was left neglected. There was something that had to be done. We finally decided to approach the chess community and gather the money via crowd-funding. And believe it or not, within just 24 hours chess players all over India raised nearly Rs. 2,15,000. This is a story of how the chess community cares for each other, this is a story of how we care for our blind players! ChessBase India thanks each and every person who contributed. The tournament begins today. Here's how things look at the venue:

In case you missed it, this was the plea for contribution towards National Premier blind that was published on 2nd February 2018.


The Blind National Premier that is going to begin today (3rd of February) in Mumbai had no backers. There were expenses to the tune of  Rs.5,00,000. Apart from HPCL which was ready to contribute Rs.50,000, there were absolutely no sponsors. This was going to be another case where the visually challenged players of our country were going to be neglected. Chess is the only sport where the blind players fight it out with the normal visioned players on equal terms. Yet, the sport is given absolutely no importance. It was about time that things had to change in our country.


ChessBase India called upon the chess community of India to contribute and ensure that the best blind players in our country feel valued. What happened next was simply awe-inspiring! Within 24 hours we received over two lakh rupees from different parts of the country. 2,14,952 to be precise! There were some who were saving money to play in an upcoming tournament, there were some who broke into their savings, there were some who stretched their ends to the limit only so that the blind national premier happens! Ankit Dalal from Gujarat State Association called with the offer to cover all the lodging and boarding expenses if the event was shifted to Ahmedabad. Logistically this was impossible to achieve, but the emotions behind this offer were so positive! One gentleman messaged us saying that the winner of the event will receive a ChessBase 14 from his end! Everyone was thinking how they could contribute in their own way. We thank each one of you for your kind gesture. You have shown that you care about the visually challenged chess players in our country.

No. Amount Name
1 5000 Sachin Samant
2 2000 Rochelle D'souza
3 11000 Madhusudan Iyer
4 1000 Atul Dahale
5 10000 Ritu Mohit Bhandari
6 25000 Sainath Ramanathan
7 2000 Priti Mahendru
8 1000 Mamta wadhwa
9 5000 Shailesh Gadre
10 5000 Avathanshu Bhat
11 500 Rekha  Raghavan
12 1000 Vikas Sharma
13 10800 Rekha Pinkesh Nahar
14 1000 Aditya Mukund Kulkarni
15 2100 V j gupta
16 500 Nishchint Sharma
17 1500 Jeet shah
18 5000 Swapnil Kothari
19 11000 Sanjoy Shome
20 1000 Sudhahar
21 1000 Giriappa T Amin
22 2000 Vanita Noronha
23 500 Rajesh gupta
24 1000 Tamojit Chakraborty
25 200 Devansh Singh
26 5000 Shubham Sanjiv Kumthekar
27 100 Harshal Pramod Patil
28 10000 Sushir Lohia
29 2000 PAVAN BNB
30 2000 Nitish Mittal
31 5000 Sudip Singh
32 2000 S C AGARWAL
33 1000 Deepak chavan
34 1500 sanjeev Tambe
35 2000 Laishram Imocha
36 1000 Niranjan Prasad
37 2000 Niranjan Prasad
38 500 Eshan Tilwani
39 10000 Vedaprakash PC
40 5000 Vivek Gupta
41 2000 Prathamesh Mokal
42 1000 Chaitanya Kulkarni
43 251 Aditya Vimal
44 1000 Mitul KH
45 1000 Aruna Shiv shankar Singare
46 2000 Sneha Ghatpande
47 2500 Abdesh Jha
48 10000 Anand Kashelkar
49 27000 Rupali Mullick
50 1001 Ramkrishna Kashelkar
51 2000 Aravind
52 10000 Amruta and Sagar
  214952 TOTAL

* There might be still some amount deposited directly to AICFB bank account which we might have missed. The bank is going to provide us with the details today and in case some amount is missed, it will be updated.



The battle is still not over! There is still more money required for the tournament to be fully sponsored. The total amount required is Rs.5,12,000. There is still three lakh rupees more required to fund the event entirely, but there is good hope that this will be possible. If you would like to contribute, hit on the Pay button below:

You can also contribute directly to the bank of AICFB. Here are the bank details:

All India Chess Federation For The Blind

Indian Bank

SB a/c: 415222082


Address:  Ground floor, United India Building, Sir P. M. Road, Fort Branch, Mumbai – 400001.


with the amount of contribution, your name, address and Permanent Account Number (PAN). These details are mandatory for tax with a copy (cc) to chessbaseindia@gmail.comIf you do make a direct payment to the above-mentioned bank please send a mail to

Let the games begin!

The first round of the premier championship will take place on the 3rd of February at 10.30 a.m. The ChessBase India team reached the venue on 2nd of February to get some of the things in place and give a professional look to the championship.

The Andheri Sports Complex is where the tournament will be held

The table tennis hall at the Andheri Sports Complex is where the tournament will take place

The first step was to get the table tennis out, and bring the chess in!

Where the tables had to be placed was to be decided! Photographer Amruta was a good person to judge this!

Somehow setting up this desktop computer felt like going back in time!

Setting up the live boards, so that the games will be broadcast all over the world

We had absolutely no experience and everything had to be done from scratch. We realized that the live boards were missing an extremely important cable, which we have called for. If we get that missing piece, the games will be live very soon! Just in case, you are wondering who would be making moves on these boards - there are volunteers.

This the tenth consecutive national premier championship that IA Manjunath Jain is officiating. He is like family to these players.

Gaurav Gadodia and Swapnil Shah indulge in some pre-tournament practice!

Even though this is the most important event for the blind players, the players themselves have to chip in with the arrangement! Who else would do it?

The final touches! And the table tennis hall is converted into a chess room!

The joy of meeting your friends!

The players meeting was held in the evening and all the players who had reached attended it

Starting rank list of players

14Kishan Gangolli5049350IND1996KAR
5Aryan B Joshi35055933IND1813MAH
3Soundarya Kumar Pradhan25051822IND1753ODI
4Gaurav Gadodia5034230IND1749MAH
6Makwana Ashvin K5081912IND1744
12Krishna Udupa5014875IND1711KAR
2Patil Shirish5081904IND1698MAH
10Swapnil Shah5043484IND1678
13Yudhajeet De25051865IND1678W B
8Samant Milind35008927IND1672MAH
11Marimuthu K45023859IND1613T N
7Prachurya Kumar Pradhan25051580IND1611ODI
9Deeptyajeet De25051458IND1607W B
1Patra Subhendu Kumar46604634IND1604ODI

Pairings for round one:

111604Patra Subhendu KumarKishan Gangolli199614
221698Patil ShirishYudhajeet De167813
331753Soundarya Kumar PradhanKrishna Udupa171112
441749Gaurav GadodiaMarimuthu K161311
551813Aryan B JoshiSwapanil Shah167810
661744Makwana Ashvin KDeeptyajeet De16079
771611Prachurya Kumar PradhanSamant Milind16728

Live games link will be provided once the games are being broadcast live.

Some facts about blind chess:

1. Kishan Gangoli, the top seed of the tournament has already been the national champion since last four years. This will be his fifth attempt to win the title.

2. Krishna Udupa, Swapnil Shah, Ashvin Makvana have been the national champions in the years 2006, 2000 and 2011 respectively. 

3. India has nearly 200 FIDE rated blind players in the country.

4. All the 14 players were selected from the National Challengers 2017. No one gets a direct seeding into the National Premier, not even the national champion.

5. Top 16 teams of the blind Olympiad qualify for the World Team Championship. This year there will be world team championship (no olympiad). India has qualified for the same because they finished seventh in the 2017 Olympiad. The top five players of this National Premier will qualify for the World Teams that will be held later this year in Bulgaria.


ChessBase India will be bringing some detailed coverage of the event. Stay tuned for all the action. If you are in Mumbai drop in at the Andheri Sports complex tomorrow - Sunday! Here's the schedule to help you plan better:

Playing schedule


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