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Retired chief justice to probe Bengal chess mess

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AICF turns to Jyotirmoy Bhattacharya

The All India Chess Federation (AICF) has appointed former Calcutta High Court chief justice (retd.) Jyotirmoy Bhattacharya to look into the Bengal Chess Association (BCA) issues.

In a press release issued on Wednesday, AICF joint secretary Naresh Sharma said the body took the decision “acting upon the decisions taken at the General Body meeting in Bhopal on December 28.”

“It may be recalled that Grandmaster Dibyendu Barua had filed a complaint against Bengal secretary Atanu Lahiri and later Sports Authority of India had found that the utilisation certificate furnished by Bengal chess for the National sub-junior chess championship 2018 was forged.

“The AICF general body had taken a strong note of especially the second finding and a motion for a thorough probe in the matter was passed,” said the release.

FIR filed

Sharma further said, “The AICF has now filed an FIR in the case as per the decision taken in the GB meeting and has also requested SAI to do a forensic check by a Govt. agency on the alleged utilisation certificate.

“Barua had accused Lahiri of engaging in corruption and diverting state fund for chess promotion to his (Lahiri’s) company Global Chess (Foundation). Barua had also accused Lahiri of banning several top players for criticising his handling of the chess affairs.”

Lahiri has rejected all the allegations made by Barua.

Following the December 28 meeting, AICF treasurer Kishor Bandekar had issued a press release claiming that president P.R.V. Raja directed him to do so.

False stories

In the release, dated December 30, Bandekar had said AICF secretary “Bharat Singh (Chauhan) is feeding false stories to the media without taking views of the president.”

The release alleged that Chauhan behaved badly and tried to discuss matters other than Bengal chess. The president “did not allow any other discussion than BCA and charges on Atanu Lahiri,” it claimed.

It said Lahiri accused Chauhan and Barua of defaming him and “has filed a criminal case against both of them.”

Documentary evidence

Chauhan said there was video recording of the proceedings and “documentary evidence of the majority supporting the matters on the agenda.”

Chauhan questioned why the president did not sign the press release and asked the treasurer, instead of a joint secretary, to do it.

In an earlier statement, Sharma had rejected the claims made by Bandekar, saying all matters on the agenda were discussed smoothly in the presence of president Raja and Union Sports Ministry observer Satyajit Sankrit.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2020 1:54:54 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/other-sports/aicf-turns-to-jyotirmoy-bhattacharya/article30515770.ece

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