FIDE restores chess ratings of over 50 Indian players

Most of the players were banned for playing in chess tournaments not `authorised’ by AICF and their ratings were subsequently removed by FIDE at the behest of the Indian chess federation.

The banned players will now need All India Chess Federation's (AICF) permission to start competing again.   -  Getty Images

FIDE vice-president and chess Grand Master Nigel Short said the Elo ratings of over 50 Indian players have been restored.

“The FIDE has restored the ratings of over 50 Indian chess players,” Short told IANS on Saturday.

These players can now compete in the domestic tournaments provided that the All India Chess Federation (AICF), which banned the players and also saw to it that their global ratings were removed by FIDE, permits them.

“It has been a longer journey than many us would have liked, but it is still important to redress wrongs,” Short tweeted replying to Prasanna Rao, an Indian chess player.

Rao had tweeted: “My FIDE rating finally restored after 10 years. Justice delayed, but not denied. Thank you @FIDE_chess @nigelshortchess @advorkovich.”

 

Most of the players were banned for playing in chess tournaments not `authorised’ by AICF and their ratings were subsequently removed by FIDE at the behest of the Indian chess federation.

A change of guard at FIDE, which is now headed by former Deputy Prime Minister of Russia Arkady Dvorkovich and his new team, facilitated the move.

“Nearly a decade ago, FIDE, at the behest of AICF, removed the Elo ratings of dozens of players and expunged their names from the records. Today we are delighted to welcome back all those players with immediate effect,” Dvorkovich said in a statement in May this year.

Welcoming the FIDE’s move, Indian chess Grand Master Abhijit Kunte told IANS: “We should thank Dvorkovich and Short for this positive turn of events.”

“It is now time for the Chess Players Association of India to restructure itself to include all rated players as its members and also hold elections to elect a new set of office bearers. The association is now dormant. The Government of India is also in favour of having an association of players to protect their interests,” Kunte added.