chessbase india logo

HelpChess Foundation: Shreya Hipparagi wins the Tanay Johar Scholarship of Rs. 50,000

by Avathanshu Bhat - 27/12/2023

Up and coming chess talent Shreya Hipparagi has been selected as the winner of the Tanay Johar Scholarship so she can continue fighting it out over the board. The prospect of her playing chess was at risk due to the financial strain it placed on her parents, since travelling over a hundred kilometres for a tournament created a burden. Tushar Kumar, who has been a chess fanatic for many years, unfortunately lost his brother Tanay to a rare type of cancer. In his memory, to spread positivity and awareness, Tushar instated a Rs. 50,000 scholarship through the HelpChess Foundation. Read on to learn more about Shreya's journey and struggle, the story behind the scholarship, and about the foundation and its work through the years.

The HelpChess Foundation was created to assist financially disadvantaged Indian chess players. A major obstacle preventing talented individuals from pursuing a chess career is the challenge of managing the necessary funds. This includes expenses for tournament participation, such as travel, accommodation, and meals, as well as substantial training costs when working with a renowned coach, running into several lakhs of rupees.

In its launch year of 2018, the HelpChess Foundation began with a small initiative, offering scholarships to deserving young talents in Indian chess. As trust in our initiatives grew, so did the scope of our support. Through scholarships and donations, many financially troubled chess players can finally see the possibility of their dream come to fruition.


The Winner of the Tanay Johar Scholarship

Shreya Hipparagi is a 13-year-old from Maharashtra who became the Under 13 Girls National Champion in 2023. She has gained a whopping 166 ELO in 2022 and has been consistently increasing her rating. She lives over 130 km from the main Sangli city and she is mostly accompanied by her mother, living with a family of 17 people. Her father is a teacher, who taught her the game at six years old. Their financial situation has been shaky, and Shreya’s aim of becoming a Grandmaster was becoming harder. However, with a Rs. 50,000 scholarship, her dream can now come true.


Her progress since she started playing has been astounding!

She has made a long list of accomplishments in her time playing with the help of her coaches IM Anup Deshmukh and Sumukh Gaikwad, including:

• National School Under-11 Chess Championship 2021 - Silver Medal.

• Under-12 Western Asian Chess Championship 2021 - Silver Medal.

• National Under-12 Chess Championship 2022 - Silver Medal.

• Under-14 Asian Team Event 2022 - Silver Medal.

• Under-14 DSO School Chess Championship 2023 - First Rank and selected to Nationals.

• Under-15 State Championship 2023 - Third Rank and selected to Nationals.

• Under-13 National Championship 2023 - National Champion in Girls category.


Consistently performing well at incredibly competitive tournaments in spite of the challenges faced shows true determination | Photo: Guru Hipparagi


Receiving a first prize from Anand will always be special! | Photo: Guru Hipparagi


Her game against Krithika B in the Nationals is one that is special to her because of how crucial it was for her to win. Check out the game below annotated by the girl with her commentary on her thoughts during the game.


Shreya lives in the Sankh Village of the Sangli District with her family who have supported her in her journey unconditionally | Photo: Guru Hipparagi


She also received a laptop worth Rs. 83.000 by Vivek Gupta, which has helped her improve her chess immensely. | Photo: Guru Hipparagi


About the Donors

Tushar works in a reinsurance company as an Actuarial Analyst and currently living in Singapore. In January 2023, his 17-year-old brother Tanay passed away from Ewing Sarcoma, a very rare type of cancer that usually occurs in teenage boys. It accounts for 1% of childhood cancer types and generally has a frequency of one in a million. It largely occurs in the pelvic bone; if it is caught early, treatments can prevent it from growing, however, there is no real cure available at the late stage. The causes of this type of cancer are unknown and appear mostly random.

Tanay was the ‘goofball’ of his family, and one of the youngest. He loved playing Valorant online with friends. | Photo: Tushar Kumar

In an effort to do good for the chess community having been a fan, and to spread awareness on the illness, Tushar decided to establish a Rs. 50,000 fund. "I want people to remember my brother for the joy and positivity he spread, and this is my way of doing that, " said Tushar. "One of the worst things about losing someone who is a child is also the feeling that they lost the potential of a whole life they could have built." Tanay's was vibrant, and his personality was more than simply the cancer that he fought. His brother hopes that his story is one that will not only inculcate awareness but will also attract more research and funding into more refined medical procedures. With this contribution, Shreya will be able to continue her chess career with less pressure and inspire the thousands of other kids like her who are passionate about the game.


Support the Initiative

If you would like to institute a scholarship or sponsor an amount, please do write to us at HelpChess is an 80G registered Charitable Trust. Here are some details so that you can be sure that you are putting in your money in the right place.

PAN number: AACTH4426K

12A Registration - AACTH4426KE20215 dated 23/09/2021

80G No - AACTH4426KF20213

CSR No. CSR00016763


Previous Work by the HelpChess Foundation

HelpChess Foundation supports Indian chess players to the tune of Rs.26 lakh in 2022-23.

ChessBase India Foundation (HelpChess) and the work it has done since inception.


About the Author:

Avathanshu Bhat is a writer at ChessBase India studying his Bachelor of Engineering Honors in Software. He is currently living in Auckland, NZ. He enjoys literature, technology, video games, and hip hop. He has been playing chess for 13 years.

Related news:
Intellion's Women's day campaign makes use of chess in a creative way

@ 22/03/2024 by Shahid Ahmed (en)
14 laptops to young Indian talents thanks to ChessBase India YouTube members

@ 22/03/2024 by Sagar Shah (en)
Sarayu, Sahithi and Mrittika get the Sarada Scholarship of Rs.10 lakh

@ 18/11/2023 by Sagar Shah (en)
Launching the Teach Chess India Mission

@ 23/10/2023 by Sagar Shah (en)
The HelpChess Fundraiser during FIDE World Cup 2023

@ 06/08/2023 by Sagar Shah (en)
The reason why Pravaha Foundation is spending Rs.2 crores (US$243k) for chess

@ 29/07/2023 by Sneha Tiwari (en)
IM Kushagra Mohan and Shriraj Bhosale: The Winners of the 4th edition of Pursue Your Chess Scolarship

@ 25/07/2023 by Sneha Tiwari (en)
Arshiya Das from Tripura wins the S. Krishnan Scholarship of Rs.50,000

@ 23/07/2023 by Sneha Tiwari (en)
HelpChess Foundation supports Indian chess players to the tune of Rs.26 lakh in 2022-23

@ 25/04/2023 by Sagar Shah (en)
Special Mentorship Program for differently abled chess players

@ 24/03/2023 by Sagar Shah (en)
ONGC Sports Scholarship Scheme 2023-24

@ 07/03/2023 by Shahid Ahmed (en)
Ethan Vaz gets the CCT Pragg Scholarship!

@ 12/02/2023 by Himank Ghosh (en)
Sumer Arsh wins the Arjun Erigaisi Death Match 2.0 scholarship of Rs.3,25,000

@ 10/02/2023 by Sagar Shah (en)
Apply for the 4th Pursue your chess scholarship of Rs.1,25,000

@ 11/01/2023 by Sagar Shah (en)
Arpita Mukherjee wins the 1st Mystic Wealth Chess Scholarship 2022-23 of Rs.1,50,000

@ 09/11/2022 by Sagar Shah (en)
ONGC Sports Scholarship Scheme 2022-23

@ 07/09/2022 by Shahid Ahmed (en)
Sarayu Velpula gets the YouTube Membership fund for the month of January 2022

@ 26/05/2022 by Sagar Shah (en)
Sadhana App Sponsorship of Rs.4,50,000 to boost the careers of 3 young chess players

@ 11/05/2022 by Sagar Shah (en)
Apply for the 1st Mystic Wealth Scholarship 2022-23 of Rs.1,50,000

@ 07/03/2022 by Sagar Shah (en)
WIM Mounika Akshaya wins the King's Gambit Scholarship of Rs.120,000

@ 11/02/2022 by Sagar Shah (en)
Shreya Hipparagi, the 12-year-old talent, gets the November fund of ChessBase India YouTube membership

@ 04/02/2022 by Sagar Shah (en)
Murleidhor Jalan Foundation sponsors Rs.7,50,000 for two young talents from North-East India

@ 15/12/2021 by Sagar Shah (en)
Harikrishnan and Neelash win Pursue your Chess Scholarship-3, get Rs.50,000 each

@ 09/11/2021 by Sagar Shah (en)
Rs.6,18,603 raised for Sanjay's fight against Osteogenesis Imperfecta

@ 05/09/2021 by Sagar Shah (en)
Help 10-year-old chess player Sanjay fight Osteogenesis Imperfecta

@ 28/08/2021 by R. Ananthram and Sagar Shah (en)
3rd Pursue your Chess Scholarship of Rs.1,00,000

@ 31/07/2021 by Sagar Shah (en)
ChessBase India Foundation (HelpChess) and the work it has done since inception

@ 25/06/2021 by Sagar Shah (en)
Lockdown Tryst with Chess

@ 18/09/2020 by Vaibhav Bajaj (en)
Samay Raina and ChessBase India Foundation raise Rs.3,70,131 for the blind youngsters of India!

@ 16/06/2020 by Sagar Shah (en)
The "Tender Therapy Scholarship" of Rs.1,08,000

@ 22/05/2020 by Avathanshu Bhat (en)
Shahil Dey and Aniruddha Potawad win the 2nd Pursue your Chess Scholarship for Rs.75,000

@ 12/05/2020 by Avathanshu Bhat (en)
Apply for the "Pursue your chess" scholarship of Rs.75,000

@ 06/03/2020 by Sagar Shah (en)
The boy who attacked Celebral Palsy - Samarth Rao wins the Dennis Kow Scholarship for Rs.51,000

@ 26/03/2019 by Sagar Shah (en)
Vintage Vishy - Why do we call him that?

@ 14/02/2019 by Sagar Shah (en)
Walking a few steps with a future queen

@ 11/02/2019 by Deepan Subbiah (en)
Krishna Prabhakar scholarship for Vishy Anand Camp in Pune

@ 07/02/2019 by Shahid Ahmed (en)
Dennis Kow scholarship of Rs.51,000 for the differently abled

@ 07/12/2018 by Sagar Shah (en)
Priyanka K wins the MKG Scholarship for Rs.50,000

@ 02/08/2018 by Sagar Shah (en)

Contact Us