Chess Under the Bridge

Well, not exactly a bridge, rather a flyover. Would you believe it, there is a Chess Lovers Club, which operates under a flyover, in one of Kolkata’s busiest markets?

Any Kolkatan will tell you that for a Bengali, Gariahat happens to be one of the favorite places to visit for shopping, be it for clothes, jewelry, food or electronic goods. These are mostly traditional stand-alone shops, which I favor over the sprawling malls. The malls, I feel lack the warmth provided by these shops.

Gariahat is at the junction of 2 major roads, and a very busy flyover runs over it. Under this flyover, every evening from 6 pm till 10 pm, a bunch of Chess lovers gather to play the game, come rain or shine. No fancy sitting arrangements, these guys sit on the concrete railings and place the chess boards there. They are obviously very passionate about the game, considering the cacophony caused by the vehicles, hawkers, shoppers and commuters. Not ideal conditions for a game like Chess, right?

They call their club simply the “Gariahat Chess Club”. Next time you visit Gariahat in the evening, do take a dekko..


Engrossed in the game of Kings & Queens, while a bus whizzes by


Your move…


Ebony & Ivory


What’s a game without a few onlookers!


I wonder who keeps the time..


Your Move- Part 2


For these lovebirds, it definitely looks like Checkmate!


View from across the road


Being a Sunday evening, the traffic was light

31 thoughts on “Chess Under the Bridge

  1. Ah! I love chess, especially when I win, which is sadly on rare occasions :-/ Maybe if I lived somewhere near chess-happenings.. Actually, scratch that! This summer I’ll bring my little plastic board and a friend with me to a park in Oslo, and play (even if people will send me some funny looks)! Thanks for the inspiration 😉

    • And I love taking photographs of people playing chess 😉 Do play the game of chess in the park of Oslo in summer and if people give funny looks…remember the title of the book by richard feynman, “what do you care what other people think!” 😀

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