Young Decision Makers

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The First Indian International Model United Nations (IIMUN) Gave Students a Chance to take on the Role of Decision Makers and Offer Solutions to Global Issues. Youth Inc tells You More

World leaders met from the 2nd to the 5th of August 2012, at The World Trade Centre in Mumbai, to discuss issues concerning countries of the world. These leaders were attending the International Model United Nations and were not older than 23 years of age. The Indian International Model United Nations (IIMUN) is the brainchild of an event management company called Aufklaren Events LLP, which was started by the youth, for the youth and of the youth. The event spanned over a period of five days, where different world issues were tackled across the numerous committees by ebullient students. The venue was buzzing with formally dressed students, who looked excited and slightly stressed, carrying the burden of the countries they were representing. The opening ceremony saw some distinguished guests from a variety of fields. The Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Mr Prithviraj Chavan, filmmaker Subhash Ghai, choreographer Shiamak Davar and music director Leslie Lewis were some of the famous personalities who graced the occasion.

India’s Largest Model United Nations:
IIMUN is the largest MUN (Model United Nations) in the country and will actually forward the resolutions passed by the committees to the United Nations. One of these students, Meher Bhalla, who is attending her 12th MUN spoke about her experience at the event.  “At IIMUN the level of debating is high as there are some very experienced delegates present here,” says Meher. The debates are smooth even while discussing sensitive issues such as the topic of drones, which is being discussed in my committee (Disarmament and International Security Committee). Someday I would actually like to be a part of the United Nations and represent my country there.”

The Delegates
Over one thousand delegates from all over the country, aged between 14-22 years, participated in this event. When the students arrived, they were seated in different areas, according to the committee they belonged to. The formal language and procedures followed by the United Nations were mirrored entirely by these committees. This took some getting used to for the students, especially avoiding personal pronouns, such as I, you, he, etc.
Each committee was headed by a chair and a vice chair, who did a commendable job of keeping discussions on track, accustoming delegates to the required procedures and maintaining the systems of the United Nations. When required, they also threatened to send delegates ‘out for a walk’ if they witnessed unwelcome behaviour. The delegates arrived at the event equipped with ideas, solutions, facts and statistics and showed an in-depth understanding of not only the country they were representing, but the global scenario as well.

 

The Committees
The different committees at the IIMUN were DISEC (Disarmament and International Security Committee), ECOFIN (Economic and Financial Council), SPECPOL (Special Political and Decolonisation Committee), HRC (Human Rights Council), SC (Security Council), FSC (Futuristic Security Council), HSC (Historical Security Council), ECOSOC (Economic and Social Council), WHO (World Health Organisation), WTO (World Trade Organisation), UNDP (United Nations Development Programme), UNEP (United Nations Environment Program), Lok Sabha and the Executive Board.
The Security Council saw some heated discussions as delegates prodded one another for relevant solutions. The Interpol saw the discussion on the illicit drug trade, and delegates discussed taking strict actions against drug trading, tracking trading routes of drugs, etc. The topic of discussion at the Lok Sabha was the controversial issue of the Lokpal Bill. Though conflicting opinions emerged during the session, decorum was maintained throughout. One can only hope this tolerant and productive debate will someday been seen during the Lok Sabha sessions held in Parliament.

The International Press

There was also a small team of budding journalists, who played the role of the International press. Assembling for a quick meeting during the day, these scribes then headed to cover the happenings at various committees. Their journalistic sensibilities were at work throughout the day, even during lunch hours! If they spotted a delegate of China enjoying a friendly banter with the delegate of India, (which is unlikely considering the constant tension between the two nations) these reporters were sure to capture an image and include this piece of gossip in their write-up. At the end of the day, the stories are compiled into a newsletter, which is distributed among the delegates on the following day. So, delegates being excessively aggressive or trying to squeeze in a nap during their sessions are likely to find these acts reported by the sneaky journalists.

An Indian United Nations

To add some colour to the event, the organisers of IIMUN decided to hold a ‘Traditional Day’ where students dressed in Indian attire, irrespective of the country they were representing. Seeing female delegates of Russia, China, France, etc in a saree might be an unlikely sight at the UN but not at IIMUN. Students flaunted their Indian attire, adding a desi flavour to the committee meetings. Also, on the fourth day of the event, a Mumbai city tour was arranged for the benefit of the attendees from different cities.

Decision Makers of the Future
An event organised and attended entirely by students, IIMUN is evidence of the awareness and passion that drives the students of today. Although the event is in its inaugural year, the organisers of the event pushed themselves to secure the best venue, sponsors and logistics. Carried out under the guidance of 10 directors and 120 organisers, IIMUN is a great display of the organisational as well as intellectual abilities of the youth. With such a successful first year, IIMUN is sure to grow in scale and create great levels of change in the years to come. If these are the leaders of tomorrow, we can rest assured that the world is in safe hands.

One of these students, Meher Bhalla, who is attending her 12th MUN spoke about her experience at the event. “At IIMUN the level of debating is very high as there are some very experienced delegates present here,” says Meher

The Lighter Side
While intense discussions comprised most committee meeting, there were also some lighter moments enjoyed by the delegates. Here are some strange, humorous and absurd comments as reported by the international press at IIMUN.

  • “The world needs China!”
  •  “Give me proof, delegate, proof!”
  • “You fluctuate!”
  • “Help and invade, help and invade! That’s what your nation does!
  •  “Stay away from Iran! Iran doesn’t need you!”
  • “SH*T delegates! Did you hear him?”
  • “Vietnam was a mistake!”
  • “When is China expected?”
  • “Delegate, please be suited.”
  • “USA I don’t need your sympathy.”

Volume 2 Issue 3

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