Debating within the Walls of an Engineering School | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, May 18, 2017 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, May 18, 2017

Debating within the Walls of an Engineering School

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Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) is widely known for its success in different national and international programming contests, Olympiads and idea generation contests. However, the top engineering university has successfully harboured its debating culture to foster understanding, cooperation, and a free and lively exchange of ideas over the years.

As a part of the initiative, BUET Debating Club (BUETDC) organised its annual debating championship from April 20 to May 5, 2017 at BUET campus under the title sponsorship of Shahjalal Islami Bank Ltd. Its media partner was SHOUT, GTV and Radio Foorti. The SJIBL-9th BUETDC National Debate Championship consisted of four segments: English Inter Varsity (IV), Inter Club Bangla, Inter School Bangla, Inter School English. The chief guest of the opening ceremony was Dr. Saiful Islam, Vice Chancellor of BUET. 

Quality motions, equipped adjudication core and delicious food make the biggest respite for debaters on weekends. Over 500 debaters and adjudicators from around 150 teams altogether competed for the championship. The champion of English IV was IBA, DU. The other finalists were BUET, IUB and NSU. Asif Mehedi Adi from North South University became the Debater of the Tournament.

The tagline of the Inter Club Bangla segment was “Bibhajoner Prithibi: Shongkot Muktir Shongkolpe”. Group of Debaters (GOD) bagged the championship while BUET Nandonik became the runners of Inter Club Bangla. Isty Ahmed of GOD was announced the Debater of the Tournament. 

The tournament was inclusive in its nature, organising separate school level championships from May 4-6, 2017. Motijheel Government Boys' School (MGBS) owned the champion's title and St. Gregory's came out second in inter-school Bangla segment. In bringing together students from vastly different backgrounds, the inter-school English segment was organised to boost preparations for debaters willing to make it to the World's School Debating Championship Team Bangladesh. Viqarunnisa Noon School won the title and St. Joseph achieved second position. 

To Towhidur Rahman Turag, the president of BUETDC, this tournament was meant to be inclusive for debaters of all segments. Saima Alam Prima, vice president of the club, said “BUET has always competed in competitions that function as recruitment platforms for different organisations. The club and the tournament aim to provide experiences that are conducive to cognitive and presentational skills for engineering students.”

The closing ceremony took place on May 6, 2017. It was presided over by Professor Emeritus and former Vice Chancellor of BRAC University, Dr. Ainun Nishat. 

Among all the events the club organises, this month-long national tournament is the biggest. With records such as breaking open in World University Debating Championship 2016, BUET has a fantastic record in dominating the world of discourse and persuasiveness. The SJIBL-9th BUETDC National Debate Championship creates an avenue for such a glorified culture.

  

Myat Moe is an occasional philosopher whose favourite pastime is confusing people with her nationality. Reach her @145michelle@gmail.com

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