“Freedom is hammered out on the anvil of discussion, dissent and debate.”
Hubert H. Humphrey
Delhi Public School, R. K. Puram hosted one of the most prestigious inter-school debate tournaments, Outspoken ‘22 on 5 November, 2022. The event was organised by DebSoc, the English Debating Society, and saw active participation from 17 schools, 13 eminent jury members and a footfall of around 300 individuals.
The event was adjudicated by Pramit Kumar Das, Ramjas College; Madhav Arora, Sri Guru Gobind Singh College of Commerce; Dev Mishra, Ramjas College; Chinmayi Sharma, Ramjas College; Darakhshan Tariq, Ramjas College; Samyak Jain, Deshbandhu College; Mannliv Kaur, Aryabhatta College; Milen Anugraha Paul, Maharaja Agrasen College; Harsh Darshan, Sri Venkateswara College; Saksham Sachdev, Maulana Azad Medical College; Shashwat Dash, Delhi Technological University; Manya Vats, Ramjas College.
The debate took place in 2 Rounds: the Preliminaries and the Knockout rounds.
The preliminary round consisted of two events – conventional and turncoat debates. In the Conventional Debate, schools were pitted against each other, arguing ideas relating to censorship, community service, taxation, and more. The participants in the Turncoat Debate faced the challenging task of switching stances mid-debate on topics they had received only on the spot with two minute preparation time.
The top 8 teams, with the maximum cumulative points, advanced to the elimination-style Asian Parliamentary Debate quarters, from where on they went to the semi-finals and the open grand finale. In each round, teams faced off in pairs of two, 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 on side Opposition.
The participants undertook engaging discourse, weighing the implications of motions such as “This House Regrets The Narrative That Professionals Working For Nonprofits Perform A ‘Public Service’ Or Sacrifice” and “This House Would Compel Therapists To Break The Seal Of Confessions To Report Crimes.”
Two teams, winning all their previous rounds, made it to the grand finale, which took place in the Audio Visual Hall. Thus ensued a fast-paced and riveting debate on the motion, “This House Believes That Pro-Refugee Advocacy Groups Should Portray Refugees As Valuable Contributors To Society, Rather Than Victims Of Their Circumstances.” The two teams truly presented a captivating discussion, with the audience hanging on to every Point Of Information and Clash.
Anticipation ran high as the Valedictory Ceremony began, with the final verdict yet to be released. At the outset, the judges were felicitated with a customised notebook, featuring the name of the event. The teacher-in-charge, Ms Kakoli Sengupta delivered a vote of thanks, reflecting on the efforts and emotions that went into the event. This was followed by the result declaration. Applause resounded throughout the hall as winners were awarded trophies, certificates, and prizes, including premium subscriptions to Taskade, an organisation and collaboration app.
The ceremony concluded with the school anthem and the national anthem.