INBA Section for Law Students – National Debate 2016


INBA Debate2


  • The Indian Independence has lead to an uncertain path towards Freedom
  • Democracy vitiates Democracy

Introduction to the debate:

Human Rights, Politics, public policy and every other ideas have polarized our opinions. India has had numerous heated debates and controversies continue to remain in our regular atmosphere. There is, however, an unspoken, unanimous agreement upon the acceptance of Democracy as the perfect governance model. We have been brought up to believe that Democracy is the pious flag bearer of freedom and a model of sanctity that we cannot question. Yet, the basic concept behind Democracy itself is the constant evaluation of the realm of perspectives where we reside. It is a tragic paradox, where, in a democracy, we have become so complacent that we choose to remain silent on discourse about the future of Democracy and Governance.

After a brutish trend of colonial Rivalry, which lead to the two great wars, the world chose peace and choice over hatred and patriarchy. The Idea of Democracy emerged as a fantasy to a world plagued by famine, war, poverty and death. England, transformed itself from a Colonialist State to a Welfare State.  Global Foreign policies too shifted in order to accommodate democracy. Democracy, a concept that was perhaps, as old as philosophy itself, emerged along with the  discourses of the Social Contract Theory and argued about the extent of Liberty and the need for inclusive and participatory world governance. Under the circumstances, even the Indian National movement, including the Indian Renaissance itself was tremendously influenced by the European imagination of complete intellectual freedom. Our Literature, our constitution and our sense of national belonging was contained through this new dream of liberty, Equality and Justice.  Indian Nationalism too was a message of Internationalism.
Within the Largest Constitution of the world, Dr Ambedkar had poured his idealism resonating through the pages of shared global History, Jurisprudence and Human Dignity. Democracy had rightly become the messiah of the commoners across the world who was devastated with war and its aftermath. Democracy, became the most sustainable form of government, because, democracy contained every belief and opinion within itself. Democracy also contained rebel. And without dissent Democracy was incomplete.

Post elections, if the winners, represented the assent of the masses, the opposition represented the dissent.  Through our separation of powers and Federal structure, every institution was ideally formed to function. However, Did Democracy, with the allure of liberty and rights, drag us into a sense of conformity where we would not even want to question ‘democracy’? We may question the policies, of a Democracy; however, we have together agreed to admit Democracy as the perfect governance model.   Intellectual Defiance and thinking, too, has somewhere, been standardised to suit every argument only in the favour democracy. Democracy has molded us to trust that there can be no system better than modern Democracy. But then…Is there any life beyond Democracy?

The Debate in Context:

The idea behind this debate is to discontinue the trend of accusing individuals for failures or mistakes and relishing controversies. Instead, the debate intends to experience an exercise of intellectual discourse, development and fulfillment.  The topics entail a journey beyond the barriers of the obvious and emerge at a higher pedestal of thinking that compels us to discuss solutions and initiate a process of future policy making. We understand, that the State and its mechanisms are chosen

and represented by us, therefore, if Development has been overlooked, in order to sustain GDP growth and if poverty as a concern has not been understood perfectly we are to be blamed and not our governments or opposition parties. In a Democracy, We are the State. We simply cannot pass on the baggage of sin that we commit together.

Professor Amartya Sen, in his book, The Argumentative Indian, describes the nature of the Indian identity as that of the apprehensions and reasoning which form the pluralist structure of the Society. India, he says, traditionally has remained intellectually aroused. And that trend of having a Democracy, as a system of public reasoning, continues even today, in different ways. It has provided shape to the social world of India and the nature of its culture. Heterodoxy has automatically become a natural state of the Indian affairs.  Persistent arguments are a part of our public life and they deeply influence our politics. Debate comes naturally to India.

Yet, has India, in the cacophony and jingoism of the populist blame game disguised as debates, losing it plot of traditional reasoning and analysis?

In terms of our developmental index, we often stand behind, some of the economically weaker nations, like Bangladesh. The debate remains open to the initiation of an ideation process to envisage a way forward and imagine the kind of future that we would want to gift ourselves.

On August 14, 2016, a day prior to the Political Independence of the Country, We intend to explore the various facets of the meaning of Independence in it. We wish to wonder if Independence is only a beginning towards the actualisation of freedom. In her long path ahead, is India determined to wipe every tear and fulfil the only ambition of mankind-Freedom.

Finally, the audience shall submit their questions to the volunteers from INBA and the moderator shall select two questions for each team.  The debate shall end with the concluding remarks.

Debate Format: 

  1. There shall be two teams debating each other in two different rounds.
  2. On one side, the team shall comprise of Seniors and Experienced members and
  3. On their opposite side, there shall be the undergraduate law students.
  4. The Senior teams shall oppose both the topics and the young speakers/student teams shall support both the topics.
  5.  Each team shall comprise of four members.

The debate structure shall be as follows :
Round 1) Each speaker shall give their opening remarks and describe their analysis of the topics in the first round.
Each speaker shall be given 5+2 minutes.
Round 2) In the second round, each member of the team give one question of rebuttal to the opposite team and the team, together can select any one question and answer it within maximum five minutes.
Round 3) In this round, the audience interacts with both the teams and asks questions to them. The moderator shall regulate the session. This round shall go on for 20+ 10 minutes.
Round 4) Each speaker of both the teams shall end the debate with their concluding speeches of 5+2 minutes. They shall address the issues they feel defined their debate and finish with their solutions and future end notes.

Confirmed Speakers

  • Shri Ram Jethmalani, Senior Advocate & Member of Parliament
  • Shri KTS Tulsi, Senior Advocate & Member of Parliament
  • Shri Mani Shankar Aiyar, Member of Parliament

Invited Guest Speakers:

  • Dr. Manmohan Singh,Former Prime Minister of India
  • Shri Salman Khurshid, Senior Advocate & Former Union Law Minister
  • Dr. Shashi Tharoor, Member of Parliament
  • Smt. Meenakshi Lekhi, Member of Parliament
  • Shri Manish Tewari, Former Minister of state for Information & Broadcasting, Govt. of India

Speaking opportunities: 

Young debaters/students are also invited to be a speaker for the debate. 

To Apply, send us your arguments both for and against any one of the topics in 200-250 words.


Send us a video of your speech in not more than five minutes, recording your arguments both for and against any one of the topics.

We wish to notice your ability to analyse and evolve newer ideas and broaden the scope of the topics. Research, Analysis and ability to infuse conviction in the ideas of the speaker while embracing every different opinion with a free spirit shall be given more weightage than mere eloquence.

Selected debaters shall be invited for a telephonic interview for the final selections. The young debaters/students shall be given assistance and mentoring by Professors and debaters in association with team INBA.

Total students to be selected – 6 

For more details regarding speaking opportunities; please contact:

Ms. Ujjaini Chatterji

[Asst. Managing Editor, Editorial Committee, INBA Section for Law Students]

Email: [email protected]; Contact: +91-8860799513

Important Points:

  • The Dress Code for the event shall be Formals for the students.
  • High Tea & Certificate of Participation will be provided to all the attendees.

Registration Fees for attending the debate – INR 250/-

Last date of registration – 08th August, 2016

For Registration- Click here

For more details please write us at: [email protected]