Appalled by the rumours doing the rounds post the Delhi high court judgment that stopped Bharat Singh Chauhan from functioning as AICF Secretary, the All India Chess Federation (AICF) pledged support to five time World Champion Viswanathan Anand who is running on the incumbent President Arkady Dvorkovich’s ticket as the deputy President.
A message/mail doing the rounds, sources of which are yet to be verified, claimed that Bharat Singh Chauhan is vying for the key post in FIDE elections which was vehemently denied by the interim secretary Vipnesh Bhardwaj and Chauhan himself.
The story started with message on Friday citing that Chauhan is the right candidate instead of Anand asking people to support his leadership role in FIDE.
Chauhan, the event director for the Olympiad which is set to be held in Chennai in less than two month’s time said, ‘Anand is a legend, and his decision to work for FIDE is a welcome boon for the world of chess and especially for India, why would we be pitting against him, my aim has always been for the benefit of the game of chess in my country. I am for chess and for chess players always!. I have spent 45 years in the game, as a player, trainer and an administrator, this is cheap trick to diverse the attention and to bring disrepute to our country. We love Anand, we worship Anand and to me personally he is like family!
Having said that, Chauhan also pointed out that the AICF was the first Federation to support the candidature of Anand as the Deputy President. As per FIDE rules one Federation can only nominate one person and it cannot be withdrawn post nomination under any circumstances.
It may be recalled that the Delhi high-court, acting upon a complaint, had filed a ruling against Chauhan a few days before that stalled his activities as AICF Secretary, however this is unlikely to have any bearing whatsoever in the preparations for the Chess Olympiad – the biggest sporting event to be held in India with 188 countries as participants.
‘The history is a little deep, this is simply a ploy by the opposing members who are actually not for chess but out to damage the reputation of not only AICF, but also our country’ quipped Vipnesh Bhardwaj who took charge as Secretary post the court order. ‘This is the first time ever that the Indian teams has a sponsorship of two crores for the Olympiad, clearly the opposition is not happy with our work, he added.
Dr. Sanjay Kapoor, the President, was all praise for Chauhan, ‘In the last year and a half that we have worked before, I have seen his dedication, hard-work and 24×7 service to the game of chess. This is a blatant lie by some attention seekers who are out tarnish the image of AICF’, he said.
‘We are trying to find out the source of this, we will be filing a police complaint soon to find out the culprit, for now the only focus is the Olympiad, our dedicated team is working round the clock on this, we want the entire nation to be a part of this biggest sporting festival, those who are spreading such rumours are anti-nationals’. Chauhan said.