Chess federation order stayed
June 10, 2016 05:50 IST

The Madras High Court on Thursday granted interim stay against the order passed by the All Indian Chess Federation (AICF) banning Neelash Saha, a Kolkata-based player from participating in international tournaments.

Justice M. Sathyanarayanan passed the order on a plea moved by the player assailing the order of AICF dated February 26 restraining him from participating in international tournaments. The judge ordered notice to the AICF and the Union Ministry of Sports and posted the plea to July 15 for further hearing.

The petitioner had participated in the National Chess Championship held by the AIFC between August 30 and September 7, 2015, at Gurgaon. He emerged victorious after obtaining 0.5 points above his next rival. By virtue of winning the championship, the petitioner became eligible for participation and sponsorship for major international competitions. On December 12, 2015, the AIFC issued a show cause notice to the player on the charge that another player Aronyak Ghosh conspired to feign indisposition to throw an extra point to the petitioner, thereby enabling him to win the National Championship.

‘Preconceived order’

Denying the charges, the petitioner alleged that the letter of show cause notice was in effect a preconceived order condemning him without providing any opportunity and on the basis of false statements.

The petitioner had immense talent and skill; he need not have risked his entire career in doing such unethical act to win the tournament when it was all but certain that he would win against Aronyak Ghosh, the council for the petitioner argued. The petitioner further submitted that he wrote a letter to the AIFC denying the charges and to his shock and surprise, after more than two and half months of his reply, the AIFC imposed penalties barring him form international tournaments.

Alleging “nepotism” on the part of AIFC, the petitioner wanted the court to quash the order and permit him to participate in international championships.


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