The battle of young minds

February 6, 2019, Hyderabad



Who was the Commander-in-Chief of the Pandava army in the Mahabharata? While the 12 finalists attempted to answer the question with an air of uncertainty- Duryodhana? Dronacharya? Dhritarashtra?, those in the audience were left to wondering.

‘Dhrishtadyumna’ flashed on the screen and the auditorium at the PB Siddhartha College of Arts and Science here erupted in gasps.

The regional round of the The Hindu Young World Quiz saw participation of 400 students from the city and as far as Kakinada in the State, and Chillakallu, Khammam and Kodad in Telangana.

In the preliminary round of the junior and the senior categories, teams of twos took a written test with 25 questions. After the test, as quizmaster V.V. Ramanan read out answers for the junior category, students of classes 4,5 and 6 chirped – Sir, Sir, Sir – with flailing arms and jumping from their seats, eager to answer first. If they named two boy characters in Enid Blyton’s The Famous Five or the colour in the middle of a rainbow, they got a prize.

Qualifying the first round with the highest score, Sahithi Voruganti and Harini Kunduru of Nirmal Hrudai,Chillakallu, waltz through the finale to win the junior title with 100 points even as St. John’s English Medium School; St. Paul’s School, Huzurnagar; and R.R. School, Khammam, were left trailing. They battled it out in a five-round contest including multimedia and buzzer segments.

In two rounds, finalists picked letters from the words ‘YOUNG WORLD QUIZ’, which revealed questions whose answer started or ended with the letters. In the last round, while the girls stayed composed and didn’t take chances, others thumped the buzzer answering correctly or losing points.

Newspaper helps

Sahithi and Harini, class 6 students, said newspaper-reading sessions at the school every day and an accessible library had helped them prepare for the contest.

In the senior category’s finale, St. Paul’s School, Huzurnagar, demolished St. John’s School, Nirmal Hrudai School, Adarsha School, Kodad, and Master Minds School and left behind R.R. High School, Khammam, the runners-up, by 117 points.

V. Abhishekar Reddy and V. Sri Vardhan Reddy of St. Paul’s School buzzed off other contestants away from the trophy in the round wherein a grid with 24 questions as boxes covered Roger Federer’s face.

Each time contestants picked the numbered questions, a part of the face was revealed. Guessing the personality first got the duo jackpot points.

With a hand hovering over the buzzer, R.R. High School students, however, unwittingly pressed it several times even before the question was read out, thereby losing points and raising titters in the audience.

Vijayawada Municipal Commissioner J. Nivas, the chief guest, said, “Taking part in quiz could make your career. The pattern of the civil services examination has changed and more focus is being laid on general knowledge. Earlier, you required subject-specific knowledge, but now the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) selects those who are well-read and knowledge.” He exhorted students to read books apart from their syllabus and newspaper every day.

Arun Kumar Sahu, the Deputy General Manager of the State Bank of India (SBI), a guest, said since the world population was majorly composed of the youth, it was important for them to be aware to be future leaders.

Yash Gowda and G. Inesh of Akshara School, Kakinada, came second in the junior category and P. Sai Manikanta and V. Srinivas Reddy of R.R. High School, Khammam, came second in the senior category.

Divakar from Eveready and P. Srikanth Reddy from Arrow Publications were present.

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