Rohini Khadilkar

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Rohini Khadilkar
Rohini Khadilkar 1982 Luzern.jpg
Rohini Khadilkar, Luzern 1982
Country India
Born (1963-04-01)1 April 1963
Title Woman International Master (1981)
FIDE rating 2215 [inactive]
Peak rating 2220 (July 1987)[1]

Rohini Khadilkar (born 1 April 1963 in Mumbai) is a chess player holding the title of Woman International Master (WIM). She has won the Indian women's championship five times and the Asian women's championship twice.[2] She was the recipient of the Arjuna Award in 1980.

Chess career[edit]

Women's competitions[edit]

Khadilkar became national women's chess champion in 1976 at the age of 13 and was the first to win that championship in three consecutive years. She has held the title on five occasions:

In 1981, Khadilkar also became the Asian women's chess champion when the competition was held at Hyderabad. She was unbeaten in that competition and scored 11.5 out of a possible 12 points. In the same year, she became a Woman International Master and in November 1983, she again won the Asian women's title when the competition was held at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Men's competitions[edit]

Khadilkar became the first female to compete in the Indian Men's Championship when she participated in 1976. Her involvement in a male competition caused a furore that necessitated a successful appeal to the High Court and caused the World Chess Federation president, Max Euwe, to rule that women cannot be barred from national and international championships.[3] She beat three state champions - Gaurang Mehta of Gujarat, Abdul Jabbar of Maharashtra and A. K. Ghosh of West Bengal - in the competition.[citation needed]

Other competitions[edit]

The Khaldikar sisters at Valletta, Chess Olympiad 1980

Khadilkar participated in the Chess Olympiad in Buenos Aires (1978), Valletta (1980), Lucerne (1982), Thessaloniki (1984), at Dubai (1986).

Khadilkar won the Zonal Championships twice, in Dubai and Malaysia, and became the World No.8 player. She was also the first Asian player to beat a chess computer, in London in 1989.[4]

On one occasion[when?], she played 113 opponents simultaneously, winning 111 of the games and drawing two.[citation needed]

Chess Ambassador[edit]

Rohini has travelled abroad to represent India on 56 occasions, visiting numerous countries. On each occasion, she was sponsored by the Government of India as an Chess Ambassador. Her visits included trips to the then-Communist countries of Poland, USSR and Yugoslavia, which were encouraged by Indira Gandhi, the prime minister at that time.

Newspaper career[edit]

In 1993, Rohini retired from chess and enrolled as a student at the Printing Technology Institute. She came first in her cohort, earning a Gold Medal, and was given Printing Diploma by Agfa-Gevaert.[4]

Rohini became the first female editor of an evening newspaper in Maharashtra. She is the assistant editor of Navakal and has been editor of Sandhyakal since 16 December 1998.


In 1977, Rohini won the Chhatrapati Award for outstanding performance in chess. Subsequently, she has been awarded India's highest honour in sports, the Arjuna award. She has also been declared Maharashtra Kanya for her chess exploits.[4]


  1. ^ Khadilkar, Rohini FIDE rating history, 1979-2001 at
  2. ^ Menon, Ajay (3 June 2012). "Anand's win fires former chess whiz from Girgaon". Hindustan Times. Mumbai. Archived from the original on 8 August 2014. Retrieved 5 August 2014. 
  3. ^ "The Hindu : Checkmating him". Retrieved 2016-04-06. 
  4. ^ a b c "Cornered Sports: At The Age Of 13, This Indian Was The First Female In The World To Compete In The Men's Chess Championship". Cornered Zone. Retrieved 2016-04-06. 

External links[edit]