Online chess event featuring Anand, Chahal raises Rs 8.8 lakh for waste pickers community

Chennai, Apr 26 (PTI) Former world champion Viswanathan Anand and India cricketer Yuzvendra Chahal among others took part in an online chess charity event, raising Rs 8.8 lakh for the waste pickers' community fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.

'Chess For Charity', held on Saturday on chess.com, saw India No.1 Anand, No.2 Vidit Gujrathi, Grandmaster Nihal Sarin, Woman Grandmaster Tania Sachdev and Croatia's Antonio Radic take on a team of comedians comprising Biswa Kalyan Rath, Samay Raina, Abhishek Upamanyu and Aakash Mehta.

Chahal, a former national under-12 champion, also participated in the fund-raiser. He had taken part in an online blitz event on April 5.

Anand had taken part in a simultaneous online event on April 11 during which an amount of Rs 4.5 lakh was raised for the PM-CARES Fund.

Apart from Anand, Gujrathi, P Harikrishna and B Adhiban, the country's top two women players-Koneru Humpy and D Harika- had participated in the event.

'An amount of Rs 8.86 lakh was raised from the event which featured Anand and Gujrathi among others. It was a great gesture by the chess players,' Rakesh Kulkarni, an International Master and Director chess.com-India, told PTI.

Meanwhile, Chess Kerala will conduct Checkmate COVID-19 International Online Blitz Tournament on May 2 to raise funds for the state government's fight against the pandemic.

The fund raised from the event will be donated to the Chief Minister's Distress Relief Fund, a press release said.

The tournament has no entry fee, but to participate, one has to contribute a minimum of Rs 250.

The tournament offers a total prize fund of Rs 52,000.

In a video message, Anand said the chess community can play a big part in raising funds for the fight against the coronavirus and invited players and enthusiasts to donate to the cause. PTI SS BS BS