AICF polls: Position is ‘zugzwang’ and ‘zwischenzug’, say players

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Chennai, Feb 10 (IANS) Passed pawns, tongue twisters like ‘zugzwang’ and ‘zwischenzug’ and walkover were some of the chess terms used by chess players at the position after the rejection of the nominations filed by 23 persons including that of All India Chess Federation (AICF) President P.R.Venketrama Raja and others for AICF elections.

On Sunday, Returning Officer retired Supreme Court Justice Fakkir Mohamed Ibrahim Kalifulla rejected the electoral nomination of 23 contestants — including that of incumbent President Raja and several others — as they did not file their nominations in person.

Kalifulla accepted as valid nominations for only five persons — all belonging to Raja’s rival camp led by AICF Secretary Bharat Singh Chauhan and Gujarat State Chess Association President Ajay H Patel.

Chess players termed the five whose nominations were accepted as ‘passed pawns’ (a pawn that can reach the eighth rank without any hindrance and morph into an all power full queen or any other piece), meaning they have been elected unopposed.

The players said it is a zugzwang position for Raja camp as they are compelled to move — go to the court now — when they would prefer to stay still.

Simply put, a player is ‘in zugzwang’ as he/she has to move which in turn would weaken the position.

“The position could also be termed as that of zwischenzug (an intermediate move by a player instead of the expected one) and changes the situation,” a Master chess player told IANS preferring anonymity.

The five nominations that were found valid were that of Patel, Chauhan, Naresh Sharma (contesting for Treasurer post), M. Arun Singh (Joint Secretary) and Vipnesh Bharadwaj (Vice President).

All the five had filed their papers in person with the Returning Officer.

While Patel is contesting for the President post, Chauhan the incumbent Secretary is standing for his re-election.

“The Returning Officer will have to declare the five as winners unopposed on February 23, the date of declaration of AICF election results. There are more than 10 Supreme Court decisions that state that once election process is started, it can be challenged only after the results are declared,” apex court advocate Sanjay K. Chadha had told IANS on Sunday.

Citing the para 6.4 of National Sports Development Code each nomination paper shall be delivered personally to the Returning Officer in person by the candidate himself/herself, Kalifulla categorically rejected the submissions of Raja and others that filing in person is only a procedural issue and not mandatory.

Meanwhile, the Raja camp will be moving the Madras High Court against Kalifulla’s decision, said R.M.Dongre who had filed his nomination for the post of Secretary.

–IANS

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