SyndicatedHindustan TimesPrisoners to represent India in world chess championship

Prisoners to represent India in world chess championship

After getting coached by Grandmaster Abhijit Kunte himself, felons lodged at Naini Central Jail will participate in an international chess championship for prisoners with high ‘josh’.

The Naini and Pune Central Jails will represent the country in the World Chess Federation tournament.

Eighty-five teams from 42 countries are participating in the global event, said senior superintendent of Naini Central Jail PN Pandey. Inmates from the two prisons were selected after 20 jails from different Indian states went up against each other in an initial phase of the tournament.

The Naini and Pune teams will be playing against their counterparts in jails of Australian and other Asian countries. The Naini team comprises Rajesh Gaud, Vakeel Ahmad, Nitesh Kumar, Mohd Umar, Sachhidanand, Chandra Mohan, Dharmraj Yadav and Shalu Sonkar.

Ahijit Kunte, a Dhyan Chand Award recipient, was requested to coach the inmates given the relevance of the tournament, jail authorities said.

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“The prisoners are filled with confidence as they will be shortly playing their matches. Their participation will help them in their re-entry to society once they are released from jail,” Kunte said.

It is worth mentioning that India Oil is aiding the event through its ” Parivartan-Jail se gaurav ki oor” programme. So far, 1800 jailbirds from 40 across the country have been given training in sports under the scheme.

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