Checkmate Covid: AICF to help chess community affected by Covid-19 | Chess News


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CHENNAI: The extension of financial aid, the mobilization of a group of doctors, psychiatrists and psychologists to provide online medical / emotional consultations, 24/7 telephone support for members of the chess community affected by Covid-19 are new initiatives taken by the All India Chess Federation (AICF), a senior official said.
With the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic across the country, the AICF has embarked on the “Checkmate Covid” program to help affected chess players.
“We have launched the ‘Checkmate Covid’ initiative to provide financial, medical and emotional support to chess players,” AICF secretary Bharat Singh Chauhan told IANS.
The initiative was officially launched on May 4 with the world chess body with the participation of FIDE President Arkady Dvorkovich, AICF officials, industrialists / businessmen, five times world champion of chess. chess Viswanathan Anand, world No. 3 and No. 9 in women’s chess Koneru Humpy and D Harika, respectively, and other great Indian players like Vidit Santosh Gujrathi and B Adhiban.
According to the AICF, a sum of Rs 60 lakh has been collected to date as part of the ‘Checkmate Covid’ initiative.
“The AICF has also contributed Rs 11 lakh for the initiative and will further help fill the shortfall, if any. Chess players and others are already contributing to the fund,” Chauhan said.
On the business side, Ashok Jain, president of Jain Irrigation, through his family and the company, has committed Rs 11 lakh.

According to Chauhan, several state chess associations are also contributing.
The AICF will also approach government institutions for priority vaccination of players participating in international tournaments / championships.
An amount of Rs 500 will be reimbursed to the needy staff of the chess community, who are vaccinated against remuneration from private hospitals, under the new program.
Chauhan stated that any member of the Indian chess community with a FIDE ID number and registered with AICF for any of the years 2018-19, 2019-20 and 2020-21 can apply for financial assistance in the part of the “Checkmate Covid” program.
“We will also consider helping elderly and poor members of the chess community,” said Chauhan.
Those seeking financial assistance should apply through the Nodal Officers who are primarily officials of state chess associations.
Asked about recruiting doctors for the program, Chauhan, thanking them, said, “Many of the doctors were chess players or parents of a chess player. Despite their different schedule, they agreed to give their time to our initiative. ”
Chauhan also thanked chess players like Anand, Humpy, Harika and others for agreeing to devote their time to this program.
According to him, prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, the number of registered AICF members was around 100,000. This number fell last year as there were no major chess activities and then rose after hosting several online chess events, Chauhan said.
A committee involved in the “Checkmate Covid” initiative will offer fundraising programs, Chauhan said.


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