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NLU Delhi cracks global moot court competition

Vimal Chander Joshi, April 9, 2013 20:56 IST
Natasha Aggarwal, Naman Joshi, Utkarsh Srivastava and Dhruv Sharma do their alma mater proud.

When four students from a Delhi-based premium law university were flying to Hong Kong to participate in Red Cross International Moot Court competition on humanitarian law, they were excited but not anxious. A spate of successes — first in the national finals and then at the regional finals in Bangladesh — had boosted their confidence and set them up for the grand win.

“In the national finals, we emerged victorious after defeating teams from 44 colleges. We outshone 16 national winners from seven different countries in the regional round, following which we made it to the international final in Hong Kong that took place last month,” says Natasha Aggarwal, a third year student of National Law University (NLU), Delhi.

Her team mates Naman Joshi (fourth year), Utkarsh Srivastava (second year) and Dhruv Sharma (second year) are equally ecstatic with the win they notched up.

The team began preparations in July last year ahead of the national finals in September. The winning teams from seven different countries of the SAARC region participated in the regional final in mid-October.

The four said they had slogged for long hours during the period to research the mock court case, where a war criminal was to be prosecuted. “During the practice session, I used to sit with the students till 11.30 pm. Their hard work has paid off,” said Prof Aparna Chandra, one of the two faculty members who helped the team prepare for the competition.

“What makes the competition formidable is the fact that the students are told merely a few minutes before the mock trial about the side they are supposed to represent. In the final round, we had to argue the case from both the sides — prosecution and defence,” Natasha says.

Prof Mrinal Satish, another teacher who guided the team, said: “International law is a difficult area to excel for any student because only a few universities teach the subject. However, arranging books and other study material is not that difficult.”

Natasha describes the experience of arguing with top teams from around the world as enriching. “Though we were the winners, I found the teams from Auckland University (New Zealand) and Australia National University very competitive.

Their style of speaking and their presentation skills were a class apart. Several contenders were extremely good in presentation, while some were good in the quality of arguments, while we were good in both,” she says.

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