In a bizarre incident, India’s youngest billionaire and Zerodha co-founder Nikhil Kamath is facing flak after he allegedly cheated to win a charity chess match against chess master Viswanathan Anand. The match was held on June 13 to raise funds for the Akshay Patra Foundation Covid-19 relief fund for feeding the needy. The match was live-streamed on Chess.com and Kamath beat Anand, who had to play ten celebrities including actors Aamir Khan and Riteish Deshmukh among others.
However, according to reports, Kamath’s profile was suspended for violating the “Fair Play" policy after it turned out that the Zerodha co-founder had cheated to win against Anand. As soon as the news went viral, Kamath faced a lot of flak especially on social media where people called him out for alleged gaming the system to win a charity match.
So the Zerodha CEO Nikhil Kamath played a charity chess match against Visvanathan Anand for COViD relief.Gamed the system to win.Got his chess profile banned.A little shameful to cheat to win against a World champ. pic.twitter.com/67GvU2j6tD— MB (@desiboho) June 13, 2021
Both Kamath and Anand, however, have defended the match, claiming it was a simulation. Sharing a press note by Kamary, Anand wrote, “Yesterday was a celebrity simul for people to raise money It was a fun experience upholding the ethics of the game.I just played the position onthe board and expected the same from everyone “.
Yesterday was a celebrity simul for people to raise money It was a fun experience upholding the ethics of the game.I just played the position onthe board and expected the same from everyone . pic.twitter.com/ISJcguA8jQ— Viswanathan Anand (@vishy64theking) June 14, 2021
Zerodha co-founder Kamath himself tweeted, alluding that it was ludicrous of people to think that he actually beat the Chess master. “It is ridiculous that so many are thinking that I really beat Vishy sir in a chess game, that is almost like me waking up and winning a 100mt race with Usain Bolt," Kamath tweeted.
It is ridiculous that so many are thinking that I really beat Vishy sir in a chess game, that is almost like me waking up and winning a 100mt race with Usain Bolt. 😬 pic.twitter.com/UoazhNiAZV— Nikhil Kamath (@nikhilkamathcio) June 14, 2021
Kamath has since apologised to people for creating confusion. In a note that he shared yesterday, Kamath wrote, “Yesterday was one of those days that I had dreamt of when I was a really young kid learning chess, to interact with Vishwanath Anand. Got the opportunity thanks to Akshaypatra and their idea of raising funds for charity conducting a bunch of chess games with Vishy".
The billionaire further added “I had help from the people analyzing the game, computers and the graciousness of Anand sir himself to treat the game as a learning experience. This was for fun and charity. In hindsight, it was quite silly as I didn’t realise all the confusion that can get caused due to this. Apologies."