From the intense pressure and sheer weight of responsibility of representing your nation and school at an international event, to making unexpected friends, the Doon School Model United Nations Conference brought out the best in the delegation of students from Sunbeams School.
As we travelled to Dehradun, India for the DSMUN 2013, we felt as if we were stepping into the completely unknown world of diplomacy, as for most, it was our first ever MUN conference. We were assigned to various committees of the simulated UN Conference — the General Assembly, the Joint-Crisis Committees, the Special Political and Decolonisation Committee (SPECPOL), the G20 etc. Most of us represented Bangladesh, whereas others had a tremendously difficult task of representing countries like Malaysia, Indonesia, Iraq, meaning that these students had to know the foreign policies of these nations from start to finish. Considering the fact that most of us were first timers, we performed very well, with Rashik Habib (UNEP — Effective Alternative to Pesticides) and me (SPECPOL — Palestinian recognition and admission to the UN) getting nominated as the best delegates.
The dance performance at the end of the event brought out a completely different and exciting side in each of us; everyone got “groovy” to the DJ’s music. Conference aside, we made friends with a very special and unique group of people from India, Pakistan and Singapore. Special thanks to the students of Doon School, who tried to make our stay in Dehradun as comfortable as possible. On the final day, we had an interactive session called “Koshish” with the students of Aitchison College (Pakistan) and Doon School (India), where we discussed the regional and economic welfare of South Asia, and how all these three nations face similar social and political problems.
On a personal note, the trip was very memorable. As the leader delegate of the only Bangladeshi school, I had the privilege of questioning Salman Khurshid, External Affairs Minister of India, regarding the Teesta water deal, to which I got a “hopeful” response. The experience at the DSMUN 2013 was an enriching one; one which allowed us to enhance our knowledge further and helped us realise the importance of diplomacy, mutual understanding, nationalism and a country’s sovereignty.
Two faculty members, Nusrat Haq and Arafat Hasan, along with eleven students — Mir Aftabuddin Ahmed, Zahra Mayeesha, Tausif Bashar, Nerissa Nashin, Raisa Zahid, Joshya Mehra, Tasawar Sattar, Raad Khalidi, Rashik Habib, Afrida Sara and Azwad Ahmed — participated at the event.
Mir Aftabuddin Ahmed is a student of Class-XII at Sunbeams School.