Daman and Diu [India], July 1 (ANI): The first-ever Chess Olympiad Torch Relay reached Daman on Friday.
In Daman, Lieutenant Governor Praful K Patel received the torch from Grandmaster Ankit Rajpare and handed it over to Grandmaster Tejas Bakre at the Swami Vivekananda Auditorium.
"1st Ever #ChessOlympiadTorchRelay Update City- DAMAN: July 1 Lieutenant Governor, Daman and Diu and Dadra and Nagar Haveli @prafulkpatel received the torch from GM Ankit Rajpare and handed it over to GM Tejas Bakre at Swami Vivekananda Auditorium, Daman #India4ChessOlympiad," tweeted SAI Media.
Earlier, the torch had travelled to Dandi in Gujarat on Friday.
"1st Ever #ChessOlympiadTorchRelay Update City- DANDI: July 1 Grandmaster Tejas Bakre and Grandmaster Ankit Rajpare take the Torch forward at Gandhi Ashram, Dandi in presence of eminent dignitaries Here are few glimpses #India4ChessOlympiad #AmritMahotsav," tweeted SAI Media.
The torch had also travelled to Surat on Friday.
1st Ever #ChessOlympiadTorchRelay Update City- SURAT: July 1 MP @CRPaatil
received the torch from GM Ankit Rajpare and handed it over to GM Tejas Bakre at Municipal Corporation Indoor Stadium, Surat Here few glimpses #India4ChessOlympiad #AmritMahotsav," tweeted SAI Media.
Other cities that have been covered so far include Leh, Jammu, Srinagar, Dharamshala, Shimla, Chandigarh, Patiala, Amritsar, Panipat, Gurugram, Kurukshetra, Dehradun, Haridwar, Meerut, Kanpur, Kevadia, Ahmedabad and Jaipur.
The torch relay was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The torch will travel to 75 cities for 40 days before it culminates at Mahabalipuram in Tamil Nadu. Over 200 countries are participating in the Chess Olympiad. Chess grandmasters will receive the torch at various identified venues.
This year, for the very first time, the International Chess Body, FIDE, instituted the Chess Olympiad Torch which is part of the Olympic tradition but was never done in the Chess Olympiad. India is the first-ever country to have the Chess Olympiad Torch Relay.
The 44th edition of the world's biggest chess event will be held in Mahabalipuram near Chennai from July 28 to August 10.
In nearly 100 years of the history of the Chess Olympiad, it's the first time that India will be hosting this prestigious event. With over 200 countries registered for the upcoming Olympiad, Indian sporting history is also set to witness a huge congregation of countries on Indian soil for the first time at an event.
AICF has unveiled a social media campaign 'Namaste World', welcoming the chess community from around the world for this event.
AICF had earlier announced two Indian teams each in the open and women's sections as the 44th Chess Olympiad has attracted 343 teams in both sections. (ANI)