The previous generation of chess players from Mumbai gets nostalgic whenever the discussion on chess reverts back to the good old days at Zandu Canteen - the ‘Mecca’ of the then Bombay’s or Mumbai’s chess before it closed its doors to chess in the year 2008 to give way to the unprecedented boom of ‘Concrete Jungles’.

For a layman the word ‘Zandu’ would be a pointer to nothing more ‘Zandu Balm’ the famous Indian Ayurveda brand to cure headaches or made more famous (infamous?) by Bollywood in ‘Dabangg’ wherein ‘Munni’ gyrates to ‘Munni Badnam Hui, Darling Tere Liye, Le Zandu Balm Hui, Darling Tere Liye”.

However, for generations of chess players like me and my predecessor or the young talented crop of players that followed us, ‘Zandu’ was a word revered in every sense for what it contributed to chess!

You ask an ‘old-timer’ like me and I can vouch that whenever I hear this word, I become nostalgic about the good old days! It take me down the memory lane where it was sheer delight to play at Zandu and, at the same time be in the company of few veteran players, who played their game with simultaneous running commentary and repartee!

Zandu was also the place which had immense contribution of players from Mumbai dominating the national and international arena by holding all sorts of tournaments and, of all, the classical events held @ a leisurely pace of one-round a day! It was a commonplace for all of us to play tournaments commencing at 6.00 pm and rounds getting adjourned at 10.00 pm and, such tournaments would come to a close after nearly 3-weeks!

For the current generation of chess players, we are bringing back this tradition of holding the tournament @ one round a day! Beginning of 4 November 2017 Indian Chess School would be holding the Chess Festival of Russia FIDE Rating Chess Tournament at the Cultural Centre of Russia - a place which has equally contributed in development of chess in Mumbai.

The basic features of this event are as under:

  • Name of the Event: ICS Chess Festival of Russia FIDE Rating Chess Tournament (AICF Event Code: 172758/MAH/2017 (
  • Dates: 04 - 12 November, 2017 (both days inclusive)
  • Venue: Russia Centre for Science & Culture, 26-A, Dr.G. Deshmukh Marg (Peddar Road), Mumbai - 400026.
  • Eligibility: Open for All Players from Maharashtra
  • Rounds: 09
  • Round Schedule: 05.30 pm (Round 1 to 8) & 10.00 am (Round 9)
  • Time-Control: 90m + 30S/Player
  • Prize Fund: INR 1,00,000/-
  • Prize Pool: Rs.1,00,000/- (Rs. One Lakh Only)
  • Total Prizes & Structure: 10 prizes (INR) - 1st: 25,000/- 2nd: 20,000/- 3rd: 15,000/- 4th: 10,000/- 5th to 10th: 5,000/-
  • Age-Category Prizes: 24 Medals total: 3 each to Boys & Girls in U-7, U-9, U-11, U-13
  • Entry Fee: INR 1,000/-
  • Mode of Payment: Online on or by bank transfer as detailed in the circular.
  • Chief Arbiter: IA Prem Pandit
  • Under the Aegis of: Mumbai City & District Chess Association

We look forward to meet chess lovers on 4 November 2017!