Gender Debates 2022 concluded on the theme of ‘Promoting Inclusive Societies’ | Ratopati

KATHMANDU, June 21: Gender Debates 2022, a debate tournament in British Parliamentary (BP) format aiming to foster discourse on promoting inclusive societies, concluded recently in Kathmandu with Avash Byanjankar and Grishma KC winning the title. 

The three day event was organized by the newly formed Sweden Alumni Network Nepal (SANN) in partnership with Debate Network Nepal (DNN) and with support from the Swedish Institute (SI). 

After a one-day of training from experienced debaters of DNN, 16 teams competed in preliminary rounds with four teams progressing into the finals. The final round held at Hotel Himalaya was titled “This house, as pride event organizers, would not work with historically homophobic corporations that now adopt rainbow capitalism”. The five member judges panel of the decisive round was chaired by Co-chief Adjudicator Larisha Lamichhane. Finalist Pawan Adhikari was named the best speaker of the tournament.

Speaking at the closing of the preliminary rounds, special guest British Ambassador to Nepal Nicola Pollitt shared her observations about the debate and highlighted the significance of events like the Gender Debates in promoting inclusion and giving young people a voice.

Speaking at the closing ceremony on the backdrop of pride parade taking place the same day, chief guest Sweden’s Honorary Consul General Moushumi Shrestha touched upon the difficulties faced by gender minorities to come out in their own families. Speaking after her was a participant identifying herself as ‘SLAY’ – beyond the gender binary – speaking how events as such provide them a safer space to be themselves.

The closing was attended by representatives from Women Lead Nepal, Ideas Nepal, King’s College, and Individuell Människohjälp.

Sweden Alumni Network Nepal is a network of alumni of Swedish Universities in Nepal formally certified by the Swedish Institute. Even as a nascent network, SANN is a team of over 25 alumni led by a board of 6 members collaborating with the Swedish Consulate in Nepal, the Embassy in India and other relevant national and international stakeholders in organizing events engaging all Sweden alumni and others.

Debate Network Nepal has been engaged in promoting parliamentary debating culture in Nepal especially among students for the last nine years. It is currently also preparing for MahaSangram debate tournament open for all and helping Nepali national schools debate team prepare to represent Nepal at the upcoming World Schools Debate Championships taking place in the Netherlands.


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