Showing posts from 2017

Queen’s Young Leaders 2018

The Queen’s Young Leaders is an award program for young people between the ages of
18-29 across the Commonwealth nations of the world. The program is sponsored by the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust, Comic Relief, University of Cambridge Institute of Continuing Education, and the Royal Commonwealth Society. This award is given to 60 young leaders and a few runners up. Started in 2014, the program has now come to its final year and on December, 5th, the final group of winners and runners up were selected.

I was one of the privileged people to have won the runners up prize two days shy of my 18th Birthday and join this elite group of young leaders. My victory was not possible without the support of my students at the National Association of the Blind and my mentors there.

Now, all I’m looking forward to is my journey as a Queen’s Young Leader,2018 highly commended runner-up.

Thank you all for your support!

Project Checkmate

When I started this project, I had no idea as to where it will go. However, over the course of time, I have managed to organise a variety of activities for students learning under this program.

The best gift that the program received was when one of its students received his International FIDE rapid and classical ratings.

The project aims to build lives through chess and with this achievement by one of its students, the future looks even brighter. I hope that Checkmate grows even further and soars to greater heights in the near future.

P.S.- Congratulations Ayush Jaiswal for receiving your FIDE ratings. Well done!

Chessmine Open Tournament

Come August 7th and I was extremely excited to participate in the strongest open tournament in the world in Bangalore, India. It was a fantastic opportunity to compete against the likes of strong Grandmasters and other titled players.

It was a wonderful event and I learnt a lot from it. I also got a chance to see the games of GMs like Abhijeet Gupta, Sahaj Grover, Vidit Gujrathi, Deep Sengupta, and many more. It was a tournament full of charisma and helped me improve my tactical abilities.

This tournament even had my students from the National Association of the Blind participating. I was happy to see them play against such competitive players. It was an environment that helped them to grow and develop as chess players.

P.S.- The National Challengers concluded last week and I was extremely happy to know that my first opponent in the Commonwealth Championship last year- GM Deepan Chakravarthy finished as the sole winner. I really learnt a lot from him and his attitude towards the game…

Chess Notes

Chess Notes was my first book as an author. I started writing it when I was twelve ,but did not manage to complete it till I was sixteen. I kept on editing and felt that over the years,I had gained more experience in the field of sports writing and had to remove most of the content and re-write the entire manuscript.

It was a long journey and the most difficult part was to find a publisher. I tried so many times but wasn't able to come to any conclusion. I had thought of giving up the idea altogether when I thought of self publishing. The book was finally released in November,2016 ,and I tried my level best to promote it at numerous places.

The book was endorsed by the MidLand Book Shop in New Delhi, the MSVV senior library, and Chessbase India. I also gave free copies to my students at ISHWAR NGO. Chess Notes got its braille version through the National Association of the Blind, Printing Press. All the blind students, thus, got a copy to keep. The book was even taken up by the A…

Sports Writing

Playing sports has always been a strong passion of mine. Ever since I was five, I have been playing different sports. I have competed for my school in tennis and swimming and I have taken part in various athletic races in school. Taekwondo has also become a means to stay in physical shape and be positive in life.

My passion for sport made me get hooked to writing about it for various online platforms. I started writing professionally when I was 14. It made my mind clearer and gave me a platform to share my thoughts with the world. It also honed my skills and polished my grammar.

Over the years, I have written for websites like Sportskeeda, Sports Crunch, Follow Your Sport, and I have also contributed a few articles on sites such as

Recently, I received a sports kit from containing a bag, a few pens, a mug, and a t-shirt. I was quite excited to get such a reward for my work. This made me even more focused on writing about sport and gave me…

An exciting summer

Summer is always a time full of activity and lots of energy. For me, summers have always been a way to relax and rejuvenate my energies for the upcoming second half of the year. It is a time when I like to explore myself and travel into the unknown. Ever since I was a year old, I have been travelling to different places and countries during these two months off. I have had the experience of travelling across three different continents- Europe, Africa, and Asia ,and I think that these travels have opened my mind to a completely different zone. I have experienced different cultures on my travels, and I have seen some of the world's most famous monuments, museums, and historical sites. I have even managed to see a couple of the world's best sporting places including Wimbledon, Lords, Foro Italico, Stamford Bridge, and the Emirates Stadium. I have always felt that these few months have given me a chance to unleash my true potential.

Apart from my travels and visits to these diffe…

Magnus Documentary

I waited in anticipation to see the Magnus Carlsen documentary, which was released in September,2016. I finally got a chance to see it in May, 2017. It was an inspirational film and I really learnt a lot by watching this film.

The documentary traces the journey of a child prodigy ,who went on to win his first world title in 2013. It showcases some exciting moments in the career of the world no.1. Right from the start, Carlsen was clearly exceptional. He had an amazing memory and could recite the names of all the countries in the world, their capitals, and their populations. All this was when he was only four years old. Clearly, this boy was gifted. His father, Henrik Carlsen was also a talented chess player. He was the one to introduce Magnus to the game. However, it wasn't until Magnus was 8 years old that he took the game seriously.

Over the course of time, Magnus played countless tournament games and climbed the ladder of success in chess. Soon he became a Grandmaster and from…

My Tryst with Chess

Seven summers ago, I played in my first rated tournament. It was the Delhi State Open FIDE Rated tournament in 2010. I was just a year into the game and it was my first ever rated tournament experience. Previously, I had competed in a few tournaments, but none of them were of this stature. I was excited, yet at the same time I was nervous. I didn’t know what to expect from a tournament of this kind. I knew that I would be competing against strong players and I was up for the challenge. I think that it was from this tournament that I got to learn more deeply about the game on the international and national circuits. This tournament was an experience to remember and cherish as it was filled with many exciting moments for me. Starting with the very first game, I got to play against an extremely strong player for my level. He was a 1800 ELO rated player and I was just an unrated player without any prior experience. Nevertheless, the game lasted for more than three hours and I was extrem…

Chess Club at MSVV

It was my dream to make chess more popular. I have always wanted to do something to make the game reach hundreds of people in the world. One way to start that was by starting a club in my own school. I drafted a proposal for the club and made its rules and regulations. It was approved by the principal Ms. Meenakshi Sahni and it is now in full swing.
The club is meant for children from grades 1-6. I want to attract children from junior classes because by the time they reach middle school, they would have a clear idea of their future in the game. Besides, the earlier one starts learning ,the better it is.
The club functions during school hours and close to 25 students are a part of it. Students learn to play the game and understand the nuances behind each move. I teach them the basics of opening theory and give them lots of puzzles to solve. I also encourage them to play in more tournaments and give them some of my knowledge from the circuit.
My book- 'Chess Notes' is also avai…

Grandmaster Jacob Aagaard in Delhi

It has been my dream to meet Grandmaster Jacob Aagaard ever since I read his book called 'Calculation' from the Grandmaster Preparation Series. My dream turned into reality when he came to New Delhi as a part of his latest book tour.

Let me first introduce GM Aagaard. He is a Scottish Grandmaster and has won the Scottish Chess Championship and the British Chess Championship. He has also been awarded with the FIDE Senior Trainer(FST) title. He is the only person in the world to have won all the major chess book awards. He has trained the likes of Boris Gelfand and Sam Shankland.

I met Mr.Aagaard when he came to give a lecture on decision-making and strategic thinking in chess. It was a two-day workshop and I was proud to have hosted the event. I helped out in the organisation and also gave an opening speech. It was wonderful to meet the master in person as well. I got to learn some insightful details on thinking in chess. I solved a lot of difficult positions that he gave me t…

Project Checkmate Journey

My journey with Project Checkmate has been extremely fruitful not just for the students who learn under this project, but for me as well. In April 2016, when I started teaching chess for the first time, I wasn't sure if the project will work out. I thought that there wouldn't be many things that I could do in this project in such a short period of time. However, I kept moving forward and didn't want to stop. I thought that the passion that these children had for chess was enough for me to make this project grow. At first, I didn't know about many ways to expand the project, but with time I created my own training plan for the students. I wanted them to feel good when they played chess and wanted them to enjoy the game as much as possible. I wanted them to explore a new territory, which had never been explored before. I wanted to step into the unknown and I wanted to make a positive contribution to the society.

I started small by teaching them the basics and giving the…

Being on the Delhi Dynamite Team

The Pro Chess League has been quite a roller coaster ride from the start. The Delhi Dynamite team has won hearts world over for its performance in the league stage. For me ,personally, this journey has been one of a kind. I have learnt a lot through this entire process of four months. I have had an opportunity to interview Grandmasters, commentate on their live games, shoot live videos, write blogs, hold promotional activities, and basically manage the entire promotion of the team. I was extremely happy and proud to have got a chance to be a part of this wonderful team. The energy is inspiring, its positive, and it has a lot of enthusiasm in it. We want to win! It has always been like this from the start and I think that this way we will continue to grow together. The Dynamite team has given me a lot and I hope that my efforts would help the team in some way as well. With the qualifiers coming soon, I hope that we do our best and maybe even clinch the title. Let's go Dynamite!

An Eventful Month

The months of December end and January were filled with different kinds of activities for me. Firstly, students learning under project checkmate were selected to participate in the National B chess championship for the blind after their fantastic performance in the North Zone. They also won medals at the National Schools and the Eminent Chess Festival. Students also participated in the 14th edition of the Modern School Vasant Vihar Inter-school Chess Tournament.

I participated in three back to back events. My first stop was in Mumbai for the Mumbai International Chess Tournament. It was the second time that I was participating in this world class event. I got a chance to play against strong opponents and I also played against the World's youngest Fide Master.
The next event that I participated in was the 15th edition of the Delhi International Grandmasters Chess Tournament. There were more than a 1000 players competing in this huge prize money event. I was proud with my performan…