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PM flags off first ever torch relay for Chess Olympiad, plays a mini match with Koneru Humpy

The torch will be taken to 75 cities over a span of 40 days before arriving in Mahabalipuram. At every location, chess grandmasters of the state will receive the torch.

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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi Sunday flagged off the first ever-torch relay for the Chess Olympiad ahead of the 44th edition of the event.

The olympiad will take place in Mahabalipuram between 28 July and 10 August.

The International Chess Federation (FIDE) has for the very first time instituted the torch relay, which is part of the Olympic tradition, but was never done for the Chess Olympiad.

FIDE President Arkady Dvorkovich handed over the torch to Modi, who gave it to five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand.

The torch will be taken to 75 cities over a span of 40 days before arriving in Mahabalipuram near Chennai. At every location, chess grandmasters of the state will receive the torch.

Leh, Srinagar, Jaipur, Surat, Mumbai, Bhopal, Patna, Kolkata, Gangtok, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Thrissur, Port Blair and Kanyakumari are among the 75 cities.

Speaking on the occasion, the prime minister, who made a ceremonial move on the chess board against woman Grandmaster Koneru Humpy, said: “The first-ever torch relay of the Chess Olympiad is starting from India, it is also the first time India is hosting the big event.”

“We are proud that the sport rose from its birth place and has made its presence felt all over the world. We are delighted to see chess return to its birth place and celebrate its success in the form of Chess Olympiad.”

“FIDE has decided that the torch relay will start from India. It is not just India’s honour, but an honour for chess,” the PM further said, adding that chess is not just a game but has now become an educational tool.

ThePrint’s Photo Editor Praveen Jain brings you pictures from the event.

Indian Chess player Koneru Humpy plays a game with PM Modi | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
Indian Grandmaster Koneru Humpy plays a round with Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the Indira Gandhi Stadium in Delhi Sunday | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
FIDE president Arkady Dvorkovich hold the torch of Chess Olympiad | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
FIDE president Arkady Dvorkovich holding the torch of the Chess Olympiad | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
PM Modi speaks to FIDE president Arkady Dvorkovich | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
PM Modi in conversation with FIDE president Arkady Dvorkovich | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
FIDE president Arkady Dvorkovich poses wiyh members | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
FIDE president Arkady Dvorkovich poses with other members | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
FIDE president Arkady Dvorkovich hugs the members | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
FIDE president Arkady Dvorkovich with other members | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
Viswanathan Anand speaks to Koneru Humpy | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
Five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand in conversation with Grandmaster Koneru Humpy | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
PM Modi cheers the crowd at the Indira Gandhi Stadium | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
The PM waves to the crowds at Indira Gandhi Stadium | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
PM Modi addresses the crowd | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
PM Modi addresses the crowd | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
Sports ministry members cheers for Viswanathan Anand | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
Sports ministry members cheer for Viswanathan Anand | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
PM Modi leaves after the function | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
PM Modi leaves after the function | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
For the guests various cultural programmes were organised | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
Glimpses from a cultural programme organised for the event | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
Kathak was performed by artists at the event | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
A classical dance performance at the event | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
Other traditional dance forms were showcased at the event | Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
Other traditional dance forms showcased at the event | Praveen Jain | ThePrint
 The programme also showcased the history of the ancient game, its origin and evolution |Photo: Praveen Jain | ThePrint
The programme also showcased the history of chess, its origin and evolution | Praveen Jain | ThePrint

Inputs from PTI

 

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