LAHORE: Government College University’s (GCU) Debating Society held a celebratory ceremony to commemorate the 130 oratory awards which they have won at 51 different debating championships held during the academic session 2010-11 across the country.
GCU Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Muhammad Khaleequr Rahman was the chief guest of the ceremony that was also attended by the GCU former public speakers, including Central Superior Services (CSS) Examinations 2011 topper Rana Abdul Aziz.Presenting the society’s annual report, GCU Debating Society Co-Adviser and former president Prof Muhammad Siddique Awan informed that the130 awards, won by the society during this academic year, included 25 team trophies and 40 best speaker awards.
He revealed that the society’s General Secretary Ali Zafar contributed 22 oratory awards single-handedly to the tally, including the prestigious team trophies won at the debate competitions held at the PAF Academy, Risalpur, Aitchison College, Home Economics College and Punjab University Law College. He said that the prestigious PAF Academy Risalpur Trophy had been bagged by the Ravians 10 times during the last 17 years.Recalling that generations of orators had been groomed at the GCU Debating Society, Prof Awan cited interesting episodes of Old versus Young Ravians Debates, where on two occasions, fathers and sons came face to face with each other.
In the late 1960s, the then editor of Dawn, Mazhar Ali Khan, and his son, Tariq Ali, a celebrated writer, contested against each other. In mid 1990s, Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan and son Ali Hassan locked horns on the motion “Men are democratic by nature while women are despotic.” However, father being the opponent did not deter Ali from arguing his case effectively and the audience eventually gave their verdict in favour of the son, agreeing that it was men and not women who were to be blamed.Paying glowing tributes to the laureate debators, the VC said, “Education alone was not sufficient for our nation building, rather character refinement was the primary requirement for our youth which the debating society has been offering ever since its inception.”
He recalled that in his student days, he himself was a promising orator, thus, he had first-hand exposure to the nature of requirements of debaters and pledged that he would extend unflinching support to further promote the debates culture at the university. He congratulated Rana Abdul Aziz, the former general secretary of GCU Debating Society, for attaining the first position in the CSS Examinations 2011.
Also, he felicitated the four Ravians, Muhammad Zulqernain, Esha Tariq, Amna Ijaz and Ali Zafar, who had recently represented Pakistan in China, India, Bangladesh and South Korea, respectively.The VC also expressed profound joy at the disclosure that the GCU debating society won over 2,100 oratory awards from across Pakistan and abroad in the last 17 years which left achievements all other academic institutions in Pakistan far behind.
Speaking on the occasion, Rana Abdul Aziz highlighted the significance of human struggle, both at the intellectual and physical plains. He referred to the philosophical treatises of Hazrat Ali Bin Usman Al-Hajveri (RA) and Allama Muhammad Iqbal to elucidate the significance of human action in the process of collective social evolution.Meanwhile, Ali Zafar, while addressing the audience, lamented that co-curricular activities were relegated to a secondary level in Pakistan whereas according to him, public speaking and thespian skills should be made a mandatory part of our national circular. He observed that such education was meaningless that did not empower a person to convince other about his perspectives pertaining to any walk of life.Later, the VC gave away gifts of books to the outgoing batch of orators. – Dailytimes