V.D.Pandit - A Tribute
It was heart breaking to hear of the sudden demise of Shri Vijay Dwarakanath Pandit (19-06-1945 to 27-04-2021), founder editor of the AICCF Bulletin. I had a brief interaction with him when he was working on his magnum opus Indian Chess History where he covered the article on knight's tour (page 207 - 208). My last interaction was in September 2020 regarding my article in British Chess Magazine July 2020 issue. The author wishes to pay his tribute by composing and dedicating some interesting tours of knight.
Tour of knight is a millennium old puzzle almost as old as the game of chess itself – the oldest available record dates back to around 840 AD. The task is to move a knight over an empty board so that it covers all the cells only once. Figure 1 shows monogram tours (knight moves delineating letter shapes). Here all the consecutive numbers from 1 to 64 are at knight’s path and the square numbers 12, 22, 32 ... 82, that is, 1, 4, 9 … 64 delineate letters ‘V’, ‘D’ and ‘P’, the first letters in his name.
Fig.1. Monogram tours with square numbers delineating letters ‘‘V’, ‘D’ and ‘P’
Such a tour is called ‘figured tour’; the term was coined in 1940’s by T. R. Dawson (1889-1951), a British author, columnist and ‘father of Fairy Chess’. The name figured tour is appropriate for any numbered tour in which certain arithmetically-related numbers are arranged in a geometrical pattern. V. D. Pandit passed away on April 27, which corresponds to 27th day of the 4th month. Figure 2 has the square numbers delineating numbers ‘4’, ‘2’ and ‘7’ respectively.
Fig.2. Figured tours with square numbers delineating ‘4’, ‘2’ and ‘7’
V. D. Pandit lived for 75 years and Figure 3 shows tour of knight in 3x5x5 (=75) cuboid. Here all the successive square numbers are also in knight path and the line joining them makes prism shape.
Fig.3. Knight tour in 3x5x5 cuboid
Figure 4 is the prettiest of all. Here all the successive square numbers are at knight path and when joined form the shape of heart – the universal symbol of love.
Fig.4. Figured tour with square numbers in heart shape
V. D. Pandit is no more with us physically but will always remain in our heart and memories.