WSDC 2012

Team India at World Schools Debating Championships (WSDC) 2012, Cape Town, South Africa


At WSDC 2012, India broke to the Octofinals for the 2nd time and finished 10th overall, winning 6 out of 8 debates in the league stages.  Amrithavarshini Venkatesh was adjudged  the 4th best, Dhruva Bhat the 6th best and Padmapriya Govindarajan the 18th best ESL speakers in the world respectively. Amrithavarshini and Dhruva also featured in the top 50 speakers in the world in the open category.


  • Amrithavarshini Venkatesh: Amrithavarshni completed her Integrated Masters in Development at IIT, Madras and has gone to work at Dalberg Global Development Advisors, Mumbai. She debated in 2008 and 2012 for India. She finished as 4th best English as a Second Language(ESL) Speaker at WSDC 2012. She continues to passionately debate in university. She coached the Indian WSDC team in 2014, 2015 and 2017, as well as the team representing ISDS at Asia World Schools Debating Championships(AWSDC) held at Thailand in 2016.
  • Padmapriya Govindarajan: Padmapriya graduated with an Integrated Masters in Development Studies at IIT Madras before going on to a Masters at Peking University, China on the Yenching Scholarship. She debated for India in 2009 and 2012, and has additionally represented ISDS in New Zealand in 2011. She finished as 18th best English as a second language(ESL) speaker at WSDC 2012. She also co-coached the Indian WSDC team in 2014. She has continued to pursue her love for debate, becoming a convenor of the oratory club at IIT Madras. She worked as an Indian correspondent for The Diplomat.
  • Dhruva Bhat: Dhruva graduated from Harvard University with a degree in Economics before heading to Oxford for an MPhil in Development Studies as a Rhodes Scholar. He debated for Team India at WSDC 2011, 2012 and 2013. He finished as 6th best ESL Speaker at WSDC 2012 and the 6th best ESL speaker at WSDC 2013. At university, he was an integral part of the Harvard Debating Club, serving as the club’s president in 2015, when he steered the Harvard team to the finals of the United States University Debating Championships in 2016 and the knockout stages of the WUDC in 2015, 2016 and 2017. He co-coached a team representing ISDS at the Asia World Schools Debating Championships(AWSDC), 2016 and the Indian WSDC team at WSDC 2017.
  • Chandrasekhar Sriram: Chandrasekhar is currently pursuing law at the National Academy of Legal Studies and Research(NALSAR). He has gone on to become one of the powerhouses of the Indian university debating circuit, with international breaks at the United Asian Debating Championship(UADC) and the Malaysian Debates Open(MDO).
  • Sriram Sridharan: Sriram graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) at the University Of Pennsylvania. After pursuing debate at the varsity level, he switched over to working as a trained public speaking coach on the University of Pennsylvania’s payroll for mentoring undergraduate and graduate students for speeches, presentations and dissertation defenses.


Sayeqa Islam

Sayeqa is a veteran in the international debate circuit. She debated for New Zealand at the World Schools Debating Championships(WSDC) 1999 and went on to have an illustrious college debating career at Victoria Wellington University.  She has been in the final of the UT Mara Australasian Debating Championship 2007 where she was also best speaker. She has also won the Cambridge Inter Varsity 2007 and the London School of Economics(LSE) Open 2010. She has also served on the Chief Adjudication panel at multiple international debating tournaments including the Australasian Debating Championship 2009 and Oxford Inter Varsity 2011.

Also undoubtedly one of the best coaches in the world, she has coached the New Zealand WSDC team to the quarterfinals in 2004. She took the Indian team to the knockout rounds in each of her three stints as coach in 2010, 2012, and 2013, as well as the England team at WSDC 2015. She coached the highly successful school, Dulwich College, in London.


Sithara Rasheed

Sithara Rasheed graduated with an MA in Development Studies from the Indian Institute of Technology(IIT), Madras in 2015 and with an MA in International and Development Economics from Yale University in 2016. She debated for India at WSDC 2008 and 2009 and coached the team representing the Indian Schools Debating Society (ISDS) at the Russell McVeagh Debating Championship, New Zealand, in 2011.

The team was managed by Mrs. Lakshmi Ravindran.

A pioneer in bringing the ‘World Schools Debating Championship’ format of debating to India, ISDS continually trains young Indians with the assistance of the best debaters from around the world, creating a new pool of ever growing fierce Indian debaters that are eager to give back.

ISDS has represented India in several international debating competitions, including the World Schools Debating Championship, since its inception in 2008.