Cap­i­tal emerg­ing as new chess coach­ing hub

Hindustan Times (Chandigarh) - - NATION - Manoj Sharma

NEWDELHI: It is late af­ter­noon and Puneet Jaiswal is ex­plain­ing to his stu­dents — chil­dren aged 7 to 12 years — the con­cepts of ‘iso­lated pawns’ and ‘pawn is­lands’ on a wall-mounted mag­netic chess board. The chil­dren are a pic­ture of con­cen­tra­tion as they sit at their desks with chess­boards laid out be­fore them.

Soon, the the­o­ret­i­cal les­son ends and the chil­dren get busy push­ing the pawns ahead as part of a prac­tice game. Jaiswal sits at his desk, which has a pro­jec­tor and a lap­top. A book­shelf next to his desk has dozens of books on chess.

Jaiswal started his academy, Cham­pi­ons Chess Cen­tre, at Delhi’s East Pa­tel Na­gar three years ago with 10 stu­dents. To­day, it has over 150 stu­dents. “Delhi is play­ing chess like never be­fore,” said Jaiswal, a well­known chess in­struc­tor in the cap­i­tal. “Par­ents are re­al­is­ing that chess is a game that teaches many lessons about life such as pa­tience, de­ci­sion mak­ing, fore­sight. One of the most pro­found lessons one learns through it is un­der­stand­ing the con­se­quence of one’s ac­tions,” he said.

Chen­nai has of­ten been called the chess cap­i­tal of In­dia, what with its vi­brant chess cul­ture and the record of pro­duc­ing the max­i­mum num­ber of In­dian grand­mas­ters, in­clud­ing for­mer world cham­pion Viswanathan Anand, but Delhi has emerged as a ma­jor hub of the board game in the past few years.

The cap­i­tal city, which un­til a few years back had only five chess acad­e­mies, to­day has over 50, where one can see chil­dren and teenagers with bum­fluff beards learn­ing to make win­ning moves. Delhi is also home to six grand­mas­ters .

JAISWAL STARTED HIS ACADEMY, CHAM­PI­ONS CHESS CEN­TRE, AT DELHI’S EAST PA­TEL NA­GAR THREE YEARS AGO WITH 10 STU­DENTS

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