RIMC wins Valley of Words, National School Debate, 2023

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The proud winners of the National School Debate, 2023 with VoW and RIMC team

Dateline Dehradun: The Valley of Words| Shabdavali Inter-School Bilingual Debate was held at the Thimayya Auditorium of the Rashtriya Indian Military College (RIMC) on November 26, 2023. The National School Debate, a part of the Valley of Words International Art and Literature Festival annual calendar is an  initiative which aims to attract young school debaters from all over India.

Sixteen participants from NVS-JNV Dehradun, Sainik School Amrawatinagar and Gopalganj, KV Hathibarkahala, BSF School Bagdogra,  RIMC, Dehradun, Eklavya School Sikkim and Arunanchal Pradesh, Him Jyoti School Dehradun and Railway School Gorakhpur and Mussoorie took centre stage for semi-finals held a day prior at RIMC.

The final event witnessed the participation of 8 students, divided equally between English and Hindi speakers, with 2 participants each arguing for and against the motion, the topic being, ‘The UN is Dead, Long Live G20.”  The Chief Guest at the event was Maj Gen Atul Rawat, AVSM, ADG NCC and the Guest of Honour was  Dr Sanjeev Chopra, Festival Director of Valley of Words|Shabdavali.

Three eminent personalities served as judges for the debate, ensuring a fair and thorough evaluation of the participants’ arguments. Mr Yogesh Kumar, a seasoned journalist with a remarkable career; Dr Srishtee Sethi, Harvard University, India Fellow specializing in Borderlands and Migration; and Mrs Rekha Kalia, a veteran in soft skills training with over 30 years of experience, brought a wealth of expertise to the event.

Dr Sethi complimented the participants, highlighting the seamless and well-researched nature of the debate and the students’ commitment to knowledge and critical thinking.

Dr Sanjeev Chopra expressed gratitude to all the esteemed guests, judges, and participants. He specifically acknowledged the instrumental role played by RIMC Commandant Brig. Vikram Kadian, The Samkhyaa Foundation, Ms Kshipra Panwar (Faculty English Deptt, RIMC), Mr Khushiram (Faculty Hindi Deptt, RIMC) and the volunteers of Valley of Words in making the event a resounding success. Dr Chopra emphasized the significance of debates in fostering knowledge and wisdom, praising the participants for putting forth well-reasoned arguments.

Maj Gen Rawat highlighted the essential qualities of a good speaker, emphasizing the importance of articulating ideas effectively.

RIMC walked away with the ‘Best Speaker Award’ in Hindi going to Abhishekh Kumar while Arush Goswami won the English ‘Best Speaker Award;’  Sana Iqbal of BSF Sr Sec School stood second while Tanmai Mishra, Railway School, and Kanishka Thapa, Navodaya Vidyalaya came in third.  In the Hindi Category: Virat Chauhan, Railway School came in second while Khushi Rajak, BSF Sr Sec School, and Abhishek Raj, Sainik School were third runners-up.

The Valley of Words’ Inter-School Bilingual Debate left a lasting impression, showcasing the intellectual prowess and oratory skills of the young debaters. The annual event provides a platform for healthy competition and fosters a spirit of critical thinking and articulate expression among young-minds.