India's chess scenario is indeed glowing, with a bevy of youngsters making it big at the international stage. The country is fast emerging as a chess powerhouse, thanks to the growing number of International Grandmasters. With an increase in the number of young kids taking to the game, the domestic tournaments have witnessed a healthy competition and a considerable improvement in the overall standard of the game. Today, parents are encouraging their wards to consider chess a career option as the young talents are giving their older counterparts a good run for money. Though the present (and the future) of chess looks bright and radiant, the game had a modest start to boast of.
Chess is a descendant of the game known as 'Chaturanga' and its roots are well-laid in India. The name 'Chaturanga' essentially came from a battle formation mentioned, in the Indian epic - Mahabharata and reflects the Indian military strategy of the past era. Since then the game underwent a number of changes and was subsequently created a more recognizable version, called Shatranj by the Persians. The popularity of the game increased further in the British Raj, when chess received patronage of the princes of the erstwhile princely states. However, it was only post independence that chess achieved a national status. In 1951, with the establishment of the All India Chess Federation (AICF), the game finally seemed to get onto a good start.