“In all debates let truth be thy aim not victory or an unjust interest “ – William Penn
On 30th September and 7th October 2023, Delhi Public School RK Puram had the honour of hosting the annual inter-school debating competition, Outspoken. The event was organised by the English Debating Society of the school, DebSoc. It saw the active participation of fourteen schools over two weekends.
The event was adjudicated by a total of eighteen jury members. The Conventional debate was adjudicated by Darshita Joshi, Delhi College of Arts and Commerce; Mehak Bahl, Ambedkar University of Delhi; Sajal Kumar, Aryabhatta College. The Turncoat debate was adjudicated by Ayush Hans, Sri Venkateswara College; Priyanka Sheokand, Sri Venkateswara College; Vashmeet Kaur, Gargi College.
The parliamentary debate panel included Vaishnavi Kashyap from Shaheed Bhagat Singh College; Ayush Hans, Sri Venkateswara College; Kaushiki Ishwar, Miranda House; Anupriya Bhatnagar, Gargi College; Naman Gambhir, Hansraj College; Harsh Darshan Upadhyay, Sri Venkateswara College; Raghav Khandelwal, Sri Venkateswara College; Ananya Mishra, Hindu College; Sneha Singh, Hindu College; Priyanka Sheokand, Sri Venkateswara College; and Vedang Choudhary, Ambedkar University.
The debate took place in two rounds – preliminary and elimination rounds.
The Preliminary rounds, conducted on 30th September, consisted of two events – Conventional and Turncoat debates. In the Conventional Debate, (Seminar Room) schools were pitted against each other, arguing ideas relating to technology, legality, taxation, and more. The topics were given two days prior to the event. Their specific stances (for/against) were assigned to them 1 minute before the speaking time started.
The participants in the Turncoat Debate (AVH) faced the challenging task of switching stances mid-debate on topics they had received only 3 moments prior.
The top eight schools with the maximum cumulative points advanced into the knockout-style Asian Parliamentary debate. In this format, the participants undertook engaging discourses, weighing the implications of motions while embodying the roles of Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and Chief Whip on side Proposition, and Leader of Opposition, Deputy Leader of Opposition, and Opposition Whip. This took place in three rounds – quarters, semis, and finals.
Vasant Valley and DPS RK Puram made it to the grand finale, which took place in the Audio Visual Hall. Both the teams presented an intriguing deliberation on the motion “This house, as a feminist, would adopt traditionally masculine traits and characteristics”.
In the valedictory ceremony, the Principal, Ms. Padma Srinivasan congratulated all participating schools, and she upheld the spirit of participation over the joy of winning. While speaking upon the last topic for debate, she reminisced about her own college days in Miranda House, Delhi University, where she was an advocate of feminism. As years passed, she embraced a centrist view on gender, believing that everyone deserves equal respect. The event came to a close with the distribution of prizes and trophies.
The schools that bagged the top three prizes in the final Asian Parliamentary Round were:
|Position||Name of School|
|FIRST||Delhi Public School RK Puram|
|SECOND||Vasant Valley School|
|THIRD||The Shri Ram School, Moulsari|
The best speakers in each format were as follows:
|Event||Name of School||Name of Speaker|
|Conventional||Mayoor School, Noida||Arnav Jai Singh|
|Turncoat||Vasant Valley School||Aadhya Bharara|
|Asian Parliamentary||Vasant Valley School||Devangana Jain|