Hyderabad: Devnar School for the Blind is turning heads by organising a five-day ‘chess tournament’ for visually impaired students for the tenth year in a row.
Supported by VST Industries in Association with the All India Chess Federation for the Blind (AICFB), the astonishing tournament had a well-organised sitting arrangement where the blind people were seen quietly indulging in the game while they played against each other and also with normal people.
Denvar School is situated at Mayur Marg in Begumpet, catering to nearly 400 students, making it one of the biggest schools for the blind in India.
The tournament that began on April 30 saw the participation of more than 200 players, coming from Maharashtra, Delhi, Chandigarh, etc and will continue till May 4.
Deputy chief arbiter, Praveen P while speaking to The Siasat Daily said that this is the 10th edition of the tournament and this year it has received a huge response after it was held back for two years owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Treasurer of the AICFB, Swapnil Shah said that the competition is one of the biggest and one of its kind in the world to have been conducted exclusively in the country for blind players so far since it saw the participation of players hailing from 18 Indian states.
Expressing gratitude to the Denvar school for organising the event, Shah said, “The number of student participants each year has increased and every year, the federation carries out five to six such tournaments under various categories to get the rating for the blind players.”
AICFB, vice president, Bhagatkar, who is a national chess champion himself, and the first to have won a bronze medal for India in the blind category, said that the visually impaired obtained a boost to play in the well-organised time-tabled atmosphere with food and stay facilities in place for the players.
To add to the spirit of the championship, a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh will be distributed among the top ten players under various categories along with trophies.
A visually impaired player, Prasad from Andhra Pradesh said that he has been playing the game for seven years now and managed to win three out of the five rounds on day 3 of the tournament.