19th Dr Amidas Goradia National Inter school Debate in English

Posted by on Sep 4, 2020 in School News | 0 comments

“You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

The Indian School hosted the 19th Dr Amidas Goradia National Interschool Debate on 27 and 28 August 2020 via the Zoom Pro platform. A formidable 28 prominent schools from diverse geographies covering all regions –north, south, east and west, made their presence felt at the coveted school debating contest. This year, the event welcomed seven new schools from Amritsar, Hazaribag, Kolkata, Bokaro and Madurai.

Over the years, the educational philosophy of edutainment has been woven intrinsically into the teaching fabric at The Indian School. Undoubtedly, its flagship debate is dedicated to the memory of India’s first allopathic doctor, Dr Amidas Goradia, illustrious ancestor of School Chairman, Mr Prafull Goradia.

The scholarly debate celebrates youthful flourish at the national level by providing a forum for ignited minds. This year, the School hosted the celebrated debate online due to the COVID-19 lockdown. Despite the current pandemic and the challenges it presented, the School maintained its rich tradition of organising the popular event for the nineteenth consecutive year for it believes the show must go on; life goes on.

Principal, Ms Tania Joshi accorded a warm welcome to the participants and wished them luck. She announced that being host, The Indian School would not compete for the rolling trophy but would offer worthy competition in the individual categories to participating debaters!

The dignitaries present on the memorable occasion included School Chairman, Mr Prafull Goradia, Vice-Chairpersons, Dr (Ms) Nayana Goradia and Ms Brinda Shroff, Mr Lal Raisinghani, Director, Principal Ms Tania Joshi, Vice Principal Dr Anu Singh and senior PTA representatives.

The programme commenced with an invocation to Lord Ganesha — “Sukh karta dukh harta varta vighnachi” — presented by the primary school choir.

Chief Guest, Lord Meghnad Desai, economist, author and British parliamentarian was welcomed by Ms Brinda Shroff. In her welcome address, Ms Shroff spoke graciously of Lord Desai and expressed the unadulterated joy one experienced at the debate on witnessing convictions being cut, then demolished only to be re-crafted in an exuberant battle of beliefs, knowledge and communication!

The vice-chair further shed light on this year’s theme commemorating four great pioneers in history- Drs Vikram Sarabhai, Hanumanthappa Narasimhaiah, Vladimir Ilyich and Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. The common thread among them is that each ushered a revolution leaving a lasting impact on their societies. The students could learn an enduring lesson from these makers of history to stay restive and make the world a better place. Big and small revolutions both make a difference, she said.

Lord Desai in his message to the participants, referred to public speaking as a very special talent that can move mountains. He quoted Lokmanya Tilak’s iconic “Swaraj is my birthright and I shall have it” and Pandit Nehru’s immortal, “Tryst with destiny”. He added  “I am sure amongst you, are some who will display memorable abilities” gladdened the hearts of those present and inspired them to put forth their best.

The multi-format debate was moderated by Mr Parnab Mukherjee, popular knowledge content curator, theatre personality and quiz master. The animated competition typically comprised a unique combination of extempore, turncoat debate and a bridge round conducted simultaneously in three breakout rooms.

The distinguished panel of presiding judges included Mr Sahaj Umang Singh Bhatia, Assistant director at White Balance Social Media Influencer for the extempore round, Mr Parnab Mukherjee for the turncoat debate, and Mr Abhishek Pal, writer and researcher to adjudicate the bridge round.

The extempore topics covered a number of thought provoking themes from ‘This number does not exist’, ‘The taste of words’, to ‘Objects in the rear view mirror appear closer’, and such. The well-read participants were allowed two minutes to prepare and two minutes to put forth their views on the chosen topic. Manan Kakkar of class IX represented the The Indian School effectively in this round.

In the Turncoat round, participants were allowed three minutes to articulate on a given topic. They were required to put forth convincing arguments in favour of, as well as against the motion. Indianite, Aryan Singh of class XII adroitly constructed the motion ‘This house knows that climate change is both endemic and pandemic in the true sense of the word.’

For the Bridge round, the topic was ‘This house will implement a negative income tax.’ The participants were allowed 12 minutes to prepare and speak in favour of and against the motion. From the host school team, Ekveer Sahoo of class IX convincingly interpreted the motion.

The dialectics on Day 1 culminated on a note of anticipation with all teams looking forward to the announcement of the results the next day, with bated breath.

On the second day of the debate, the six qualifying teams were announced by Principal  Ms Joshi. She also announced the winners of the Extempore, Turncoat and Bridge rounds. The six best teams prominently included Mayo College for Girls, Ajmer; Mahadevi Birla World Academy, Kolkata; Singapore International School, Mumbai; The Mother’s International School, Vasant Valley School and The Indian School.

Mr Parnab Mukherjee edified the teams that could not book a place in the semi-finals. He elaborated the finer nuances of debating where he asked the debaters to work on facts and counter facts, selecting the right words, referring to historical dates and years in their speeches to create a certain image in the mind of the audience. He also highlighted the fact that public speaking is all about presence as it defines the speaker. It lies in the structure, anecdotes, and how he or she engages the audience by picking up  examples from their surroundings.

The six semi-finalist teams engaged in a fiery display of arguments in the two rounds on the proposed motions:  “ This house believes there is no such thing called neutral media” and “ This house knows privacy is an outdated word in the new normal across the world”.

In the war of words among students, all sides stood triumphant. It was a perfect canvas for imagination among the prolific participants which saw Mayo College Girls’ School and Vasant Valley School proceed into the finals. The exciting final round was divided into two parts again – debate (proposition and opposition) and a block-tackle round.

The specific topic for the proposition and opposition round was –“This house believes the UN is both a necessary illusion and delusion.” Sanidhi Singh and Ishita Vaid from Mayo College Girls’ School and Siddhant Nagrath and Anshuman Singh from the Vasant Valley School put forth their well-structured arguments.

The Vasant Valley School debate team fiercely debated the apparent motion “This house rejects the idea of“ by all means necessary. On the other hand, the Mayo College Girls’ debaters delved eloquently on “This house believes we human beings have turned a poor version of selfies.”

“I don’t have an Instagram account as I have to be someone I am not in front of many people” stated Sanidhi Singh. Both the opposing teams were suitably prepared and undoubtedly convinced the critical audience of their considered beliefs and views. The key participants, armed with reliable statistics and accurate data undoubtedly made their arguments more emphatic with their righteous facial expressions and voice modulation. They typically exhibited great oratory skill. They invariably spoke ‘for’ and ‘against’ the apparent motion and debated enthusiastically.

The highly entertaining block and tackle round saw some unusual moments as both speakers, Siddhant Nagrath of the Vasant Valley School and Sanidhi Singh of Mayo College Girls deftly changed stances at the content moderator’s impulse.

The extraordinary session was naturally a kaleidoscope of expressed opinions, independent thoughts, brilliant ideas and unique perspectives that enhanced the content knowledge and comprehensive understanding of the specific topics intentionally given. The notable highlight of the event was the question-answer round with a volley of questions and counter questions aptly answered by witty and vivacious speakers.

At the imminent end of the fascinating debate, Mayo College Girls’ emerged as the consistent winners and Vasant Valley School was unanimously declared runners-up.

An unprecedented number of prestigious awards, synonymous with the Goradia debate, were showered on the worthy and talented speakers. All the selected participants were ceremoniously presented e-certificates of successful participation.

The Indianite debating team member, Aryan Singh did the School proud by bagging the title of Best Speaker in the Semi-finals. The sincere vote of heartfelt thanks was humbly proposed by Twisha Kacker of class XII. The glorious day naturally concluded on a joyous note.

The outstanding results:

Best School – Mayo College Girls’ School, Ajmer
First Runners up – Vasant Valley School, New Delhi
Joint Third position – Mahadevi Birla World Academy, Kolkata and

Mother’s International School, New Delhi

Best Speaker (finals) – Siddhant Nagrath, Vasant Valley School, New Delhi
Best Speaker (semi-finals) – Maanya Chaturvedi, The Mother’s International School and Aryan Singh, The Indian School
Best Interjector – Samriddhi Chatterjee, Mahadevi Birla World Academy, Kolkata

Best Outstation School – Singapore International School, Mumbai

Best Speakers (Turncoat)
Maira Aggarwal, Modern School, Barakhamba Road
Annaika Saigal, Sanskriti School, Chanakyapuri
Zyna Dhillon, Mount Litera Zee School, Amritsar

Best Speakers (Extempore)
Rishita Singh, Sunbeam School, Lahartara
Prerna, DPS, Bokaro
Sweksha Mishra- DAV Public School, Hazaribagh

Best Speakers (Bridge)
Reya Malu, Maharani Gayatri Devi School, Jaipur
Tanmay Gangwar, Birla Vidya Mandir, Nainital
Kavin Srivasan, Mahatma Montessori School, Gopala Krishna Nagar, Madurai

 For more pictures click here…..

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