KOZHIKODE: PT Ummer Koya, who was the vice-president of the International Chess Federation (FIDE) for a decade from 1996 to 2006 and who placed a big role in promoting the sport in the country, passed away on Tuesday.
Ummer Koya, who has been undergoing treatment for various illnesses, breathed his last at his residence in Krishna Menon Road, Panniyankara in Kozhikode district. He was 69.
"We are very thankful for his dedication and his contribution to promoting chess from both institutions, and from FIDE we would like to express our sincerest condolences to his relatives, his loved ones, and all the members of the Indian chess community," said the International Chess Federation, in a tweet.
In his condolence message, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said Ummer Koya will be remembered for making chess popular in the country. "This will be his main contribution," Vijayan said, adding that several international level players have come up from India due to this.
Ummer Koya is survived by his Najma Koya and three children, Nasiya Nona, Nadiya Nona and Najmal Rahman. The last rituals will be held at Juma Masjid, Kannamparamba on Tuesday at 8 pm.