Jamshedpur National Debate – Event Report

XLRI successfully hosted a national level debate competition on its campus for premier institutions across various disciplines, on 26th February. The details of the event are below:

The event, the first of its kind in the steel city of Jamshedpur, was organized by the CII Young Indians committee of XLRI in association with Raymond. Premier institutions across various disciplines like engineering, management, law and the sciences were invited. The list included the who’s who of Indian education like IITS, IIMs, St Xavier’s, Presidency College Kolkata, St Stephen’s, SRCC, LSR from Delhi University etc. After an initial round of short listing on the basis of essays written by the students, 8 teams made it to the grand finale. The topic for the essay was“Institutes of Higher learning are in the business of shaping careers, not minds”. The finalists were Presidency College Kolkata, TISS Mumbai, IIM Kolkata, SP Jain Institute of Management Research, KC College Mumbai, Welingkar Mumbai and SIOM Nasik.

The theme of the debate was based on education. The topic for the debate was “In the opinion of the house, the Right to education is merely the right to Literacy”. Mr. Ajoy Kumar (MP) acted as the chief guest for the event. In his inspiring speech he spoke of the apathy of middle class to the political process which according to him was the primary reason why the middle class agenda of education and change doesn’t find any resonance in the political and bureaucratic circles. He also spoke about his own experience of running for Parliament and encouraged the youth to take part in the political process in order to bring positive change. He spoke about his experience in visiting schools in rural areas and how the right to education, and other such interventions can create massive changes in the lives of the under privileged.

Mr. DR Mody, independent Consultant and visiting faculty at XLRI acted as moderator for the event. Other prominent panelists included Ms Gita Surie, Associate Professor at Adelphi University, Mr. Anurag Jain, Chairman and Co-founder of Neev Foundation and Prof Jomon, Faculty coordinator of CII-Yi at XLRI.

The debate was lively with a plethora of arguments and counter arguments. In his address, Mr Mody stressed on the importance of ethics in education, the seeming lack of which in the current context is a major cause of graft and corruption at all levels. In the end it was Sanchayan Bhattacharjee and Shweta Sharma from KC College Mumbai along with Madhumita Bhattacharya and Bimal Viswam from hosts XLRI who emerged as joint winners. Shaurya Ahuja and Vibhor Gupta from IIM Kolkata finished a close second.

Along with the debate, the CII Yi committee also organized an essay writing competition for the school students of Jamshedpur. The topic for the contest, also based on the theme of education, was “RTE, The Right Way Forward?” Rupal Akanksha from Hill Top School came first in the contest and Ritu Prasad from Motilal Nehru Public School came second.

The committee plans to make this an annual event and put Jamshedpur firmly on the debating map of the country. There are plans to include premier schools from cities across eastern India next year and the make the event bigger and better.

About CII-Yi: The CII-Yi chapter at XLRI is part of large network of such groups spread in educational institutions and corporations across the country. The team seeks to provide a platform for young minds at XLRI to engage in Nation building initiatives. These include socially relevant developmental projects in the areas of education, employability, youth affairs and health. Established in 2008, it already boasts of having undertaken several initiatives to further its mission. Led by Mr. Debroop Sengupta and under the guidance of Prof. M. G. Jomon, the CII YI Net at XLRI comprises of 26 team members across all Management Programmes of XLRI (including Executive Programmes).

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