18th August 2005

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Wednesday, 3rd August, 2005
A Just a Minute competition was held for Class IX.
Thursday, 4th August, 2005
A Sanskrit Vaachan Pratiyogita was held for Class VIII.0
A Multimedia Competition on Radioactivity was held for Class IX.
An English Inter Section Debate was held for Class VI.
Friday, 5th August, 2005
Class IV went for an overnight visit to Agra, ‘Tajmahal Darshan’.
A Sanskrit Vaachan Pratiyogita took place for Class VI.
A Poster Making and Collage Making competition takes place for Class IX.
A Marketing Strategy competition was held. The winners are
1st: Farhad Colabavala, Rishab Sareen, Ashish Aggarwal, Nishant Singh
1st: Tara Brara, Simrat Dugal, Prerna Sharma, Ishani Uppal
2nd: Saday Mahajan, Devika Deshpande, Sakshi Chopra, Raseel Bakshi
Saturday, 6th august, 2005
Teachers and children take part in the ‘Prabhat Pheri’.
Tuesday 9th August
A 2 day training programme on Adolescence and HIV AIDS was organised by Vasant Valley School for teachers of various schools in collaboration with UN AIDS and UNESCO
Thursday August 11th
The results of the Maths prize test were announced. The results are as follows:
Class 6– Varun Dutta
Class 7– Shikhar Nayak
Class 8– Ashrika Kohli
Class 9– Harshvardhan Singh
Class 10- Yagnaseni Dasgupta
Class 11- Gautam Surya
Class 12- Krittivas Dalmia and Pranay Jain

Indian Music Competition’05
If in a concoction, you throw in weeks of hard work (from the participants and of course, the music department), some last minute tensions, a little sneaky backstage gossip, and lots of contemplation over who would take home the prizes, you would get the Indian Music Competition’05!
Did the best people win? Well, this is a controversial topic and we wish for no brickbats, so let’s just say the judges made their decisions and of course, all the participants gave great performances!
The show kicked off with the group instrumental, which Madhav Kaushish (accompanied by Jai Oberoi) won in a clean sweep!
Then came the group song category (with classical music theme) which, had students, often blamed for being too “anglicized”, singing pure classical ragas, much to the appreciation of the judges. It was Red House, however, who really impressed, and came first.
The Duet category was a close competition with all four houses having some really great songs to offer, but Smriti Malik and Saranya Misra wowed the crowd with “Chalka Chalka”.
The Solo sections had four great performances with very diverse voices. All four houses gave awesome performances but it was Shivangi Sahni, of Red house, with her sweet as sugar voice who took the first position.
So Red House and Blue House swept the Indian Music Showcase and shared the overall first position. We look forward to next year's show, with lots of new talents and fresh winners!
Amba Kak


The highlight of the independence day celebrations at school this year was the unfurling of the tricolour, which instilled in us a rush of pride in our country’s long struggle to attain freedom. The ladoos were delicious as usual, even at 8 in the morning…The green bands distributed for conservation of wildlife were a big hit, as students rejoiced for the symbolic upliftment on the ban of coloured wristbands. The performances put up by the students, teachers and the bhaiyas and didis succeeded in resonating the spirit of freedom.
Saira Dayal, Ria Sen, Saranya Misra

At the stroke of the midnight hour, when the world sleeps…… the Class 12 students of Vasant Valley were at in their second home, having a blast.
On the eve of Independence Day, as always, class 12 spent the night in school ‘to decorate’ it and celebrate this occasion. The massive Indian flag, which had been beautifully decorated with hand prints, seemed to welcome us to a night which was sure to be memorable.
It was apparent to all of us just how much effort the staff, bhaiyyas and didis had put into making our night stay comfortable. The staff room had been converted into a dorm for us and we readily invaded it, armed with our i-pods and DVD’s. The centre courtyard was lit up and we had full access to the basketball court, the gym and the field, which we all used to the full extent.
Shortly after ‘settling in’ we proceeded to the splash taal for delicious biryani which was followed by a few patriotic songs and a special surprise performance by Mr.Vimlendu Jha, who sung a song for us. Keeping in tune with the spirit of freedom, Ms. Krishnan let us do what we wanted, although she did very unsuccessfully attempt to force us into sleeping a couple of times.
The alumni basketball team paid us a visit at midnight and played a match with the Class 12 team, which they unfortunately won by 15 points. Most of the students were playing in the courtyard or were in the staff room watching movies, and trying to catch a wink without letting their friends realize it.
At about 4, exhausted, yet enthusiastic, we began changing for the Prabhat Pheri. Our spirit seemed to be rekindled as we walked through Vasant Kunj, led by Mr. Kapur singing songs and trying to keep in tune, a feat at which we were considerably unsuccessful. On our return we collapsed onto our yet unused mattresses in the staff room, before being woken up by a determined Ms. Krishnan who succeeded in her task along with the assistance of some cold water.
The entire experience was very heartwarming and each one of us has added it to our archives of cherished memories of a school that has taught us to be ‘independent’ human beings.

Ashish Aggarwal

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A Day in the Life of a
Foundation Baby

They stroll into school at 9 am, one look at them, and you can spot the mischief in their eyes. They are a force to reckon with, they are the Foundation babies. As soon as they enter their classrooms they wait impatiently for their parents to leave, so that they can kick start their day with half an hour of academics. They learn the alphabet and numbers, and after this dose of studying they are completely stressed out. Phew! Soon after this its breakfast time for the babies, and they get everything ranging from pizza to chocos. Next it’s time to go to the Jhoola Badi, where you can find the future athletes of Vasant Valley School swinging from the monkey bars and instead of sliding down the slide they can be seen climbing it the wrong way. The next generation artists are busy making sand castles while the rest of them are doing anything to keep themselves occupied. As we are watching them, a little boy comes up to his teacher and says, “Ma’am do you know it is bad to use the middle finger!” we’re left standing there startled and dumbfounded.
The next lesson is dedicated to a story from Mr. Pandey or Shreemaan Pandey as he is fondly called by these babies. They hear stories ranging from Snow White and the Seven Dwarves to Gholu aur Bholu. Being the creative teacher that Mr. Pandey is, he makes the children ‘enact’ (which actually means the kids standing around totally clueless) his stories.
After the exciting ‘theatre’ session, the kids head off to their favourite subject – THE PLAYROOM. Here the kids shed all inhibitions. This is where their true character comes to life. They ride around on plastic scooters, narrowly avoiding each other (but not always!), diving into the sponge bed like professionals and bombarding each other with sponges with faultless accuracy. But alas, all good things must come to an end, as the call ‘tidy up!’ rings amongst their tender ears.
Once a week, the kids get to indulge for 40 minutes in one of our school’s latest additions – The Splash Taal. Within these 40 minutes, one can experience splashing, dunking or just plain old wading. And every now and then, one wonders why the water seems a little warm.
The finale of their school day is the civilized lunch. Sitting in their places, napkins spread out and fork and spoon in hand, our ladies and gentlemen in training eat their lunch in sophistication and style. They could put the whole of senior school to shame. After this ‘tiring’ day, the Foundation Babies are reunited once again with their parents and head home, all ready for a long nap (which they so rightfully deserve). It just reminds us of the good ol’ days, and sometimes we just wish that we could relive them once again.

Mallika Sadh, Soumya Dasgupta and Jahan Nargolwala

Tree Riddles

I’m known as the umbrella tree. I’m an evergreen tree & I’m known as the village pharmacy of India. My bark, leaves, seeds, twigs & roots are used by people to protect their skin. Who am I?
Ayesha Ghai Dev 3C

I am large tree I have roots dangling down from my branches. You must have noticed sages sitting below me. I’m a common tree in India Who am I?
Indranil Roy 3C

I’m the national tree of Canada. I can live for 450 years. Every 40 years I give out syrup which is sweet and used to make things. Who am I?
Radhika 3A

Getting Fishy
Fish, fish in the sea,
Come and play with me
We will have lots of fun
As in this game
We have to run.
Aakanksha Sahib III C

A Brave Lady

My grand–aunt was a freedom fighter. Although she was only in college, she had joined the freedom movement and was working with Aruna Asaf Ali. One day when she was giving out some information on the Quit India Movement, she was arrested by the British police and taken to jail. My Grand-aunt used to tell me that in jail she was made to stay with all sorts of criminals. In the next cell there was a woman who had murdered her husband. It was very scary for my grand-aunt who was only a young girl. However, Rup Seth (my grand-aunt) remained brave and undaunted. She made a plan with her friend (who was also in jail with her) to hoist the Indian flag inside the jail. My grand-aunt and her friend carried out this plan even though they knew that they would be caught and punished. The next morning there was great excitement in the jail when the prisoners woke up to see the Indian flag flying high instead of the British flag. My grand-aunt and her friend confessed their crime to the jailers and they were sent off to solitary confinement for fifteen days. It was a very tough punishment but my grand-aunt accepted it. Many years later after India won Independence; my grand-aunt was honored by the President of India. But, for my grand-aunt the real prize was the freedom of our country.

Ananya Bhandari

Man Vs. God: Who Created Whom?

Strolling lazily along the seashore one evening, you stumble upon a watch lying on the sand. As you walk past the monotonous piece of machinery, you may ponder over who might have created it- surely, someone must have. Realizing the futility of the subject, however, you casually assign this creator his anonymous name, a watchmaker, and continue to saunter along the invitingly peaceful shoreline.
Now, if a lifeless mechanical device as simple and unexciting as a watch can have a creator, then surely, an entity as intricate and multifaceted as a human being must also possess a conscious maker. A maker with divine aesthetic sense and infallible craftsmanship who brought to life an unending and perfectly coordinated universe. And isn’t the only being who could possibly possess such virtues God?
Not quite. The watch mentioned earlier serves a specific purpose- to tell the time. We as human beings serve no such purpose. We simply exist. And as far as the inexplicable beauty of the universe is concerned, it cannot be inferred from the fact that the universe was created that God was its creator, and just because it is beautiful and varied doesn’t mean it was consciously designed. Can’t beauty happen by accident? Of course it can, and here’s how.
God has been long known to perform miracles. He has also been believed to know with infallible certainty the future. But what about his freedom? For God to be free in action there must be the possibility for a change of mind. This means that God himself cannot perfectly know his own future. Only such a god can intervene in the course of human events and perform a miracle. Yet for a miracle to be a free act, it cannot be known in advance. And if this god changes its mind, then we cannot say that it really did know in advance what would happen, much less know it perfectly. A perfect case of self-contradiction.
Another loophole in God’s existence is the chain of cause and effect. Everything in the universe has a cause. Only God exists as the uncaused first cause. But this cosmological argument doesn’t account for anything. Firstly, an uncaused first cause doesn’t necessarily have all the attributes it would need to be called ‘God’. More importantly, however, this ‘uncaused first cause’ is just as incomprehensible to us as an endless chain of cause and effect. It just shifts the incomprehension one stage back.
If God does indeed exist as a perfect being, bereft of want or desire, then why did he create the universe in the first place? It would be outside the realm of perfection to experiment with even the slightest temptation- be it curiosity alone.
Arnav Sharma


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Black and White

Sacred emotions
Black and white
Arousing desire
Blinding light
He walks in his rickety solitude
A stick to support
Only memories to live for
While walking to his death
A lifetime of experience passed on.
He wants to live his youth again
All the joy and pain
He wants to learn to walk again.
And yet he knows he can’t.
Someone has to take his place
The little child, born out of his light
That innocent face
Killing the desire in him
But could he challenge God?
Take devil’s place
Become immortal..??
Could he be an individual case?
Something in him is shouting
“Stop this nuisance
Death can’t be braced”
A lonely silence left
Trying too hard not to cry
He’s been taken away
Away from his wife
Away from his children
Love has never known any logic
But the head begs to differ
He wants to kill someone
And take his place
He wants to live some more
Just one more second.
They say age makes you wise
Yet wisdom stands in his way
Death so black
Life so white
He wants to go back there
Make those mistakes just one more time
Fall in love
Skin his knee
Kiss the rain one more time
Contradicting emotions
Has he the right to ask for more?
Seventy years of fulfillment
Dare he want more?
Upsetting undercurrents
Shaking his mortality
Holding his hand
Death pulling him in too fast
Time slipping by
Tears wetting the sign of life
Panic surrounds him
Those soundless dreams
He’s losing his life.
A void is all that stays
He’s going away
Black dark, white waiting,
To be unveiled
A life destroyed
Or God’s design?
The black fades
With the rhythm as his last breath
He daren’t ask for more
He knows he’ll be back again
Black—less dream
White—less memory
Zoya Brar

Our Experience at the Sri Dasmesh Academy

After an eight hour journey from New Delhi, the sight of the beautiful never ending campus of The Sri Dasmesh Academy lifted our spirits. The campus sprawls across 200 acres and has abundant greenery. The people were hospitable, helpful and friendly from the start and it didn’t take long for us to settle down.
We were impressed by the open yet simple architecture of the school building which added to the serenity of the environment.
The purpose of our visit was to attend a first aid programme conducted by a few Israeli medical cadets. This workshop enriched us in different fields of medicine and science for application in our daily lives. During this training module we learnt about first aid, resuscitation, head injuries, chest injuries, injuries from animals, fractures and bleeding.
Besides learning first aid we also interacted with the Israeli students. We learned about their culture, lifestyle, geographical features of their country and language and tried our best to tell them about our rich and diverse cultural heritage. We enjoyed dancing, singing and taking memorable photographs with them.
We are extremely grateful to the staff and students of the academy for their outstanding hospitality. No matter the time or situation, we could always count on them.
The performance by the students of this academy was commendable and reminded us of our unique heritage. We learnt a number of interesting things about the diversity of our country. The end result showed the huge amount of effort that was put into each performance by the faculty and the students.
Not only was this trip educational and culturally stimulating, it was also fun and enjoyable. We will definitely cherish these memories and keep them close to our hearts.
Shivani Agrawal, Sakhshi Mahajan, Arshia Arora, Jaagriti Seth and
Natasha Uppal.


Living On A Landfill

On the 13th of August, a group of Class 12 students were taken to Ghazipur to look at one of Delhi’s landfills.
The Ghazipur Landfill is a 70 acre landfill that was dug 5 metres into the ground. Today, however, it is almost 30 metres high, and is quite literally a mountain of garbage.
I thought that it was an exaggeration when I heard that all the garbage of Delhi ended up in the landfill, but when I got there, I realized it wasn’t: anything and everything that can be thrown into a dustbin lands up at the landfill. The contents of the landfill range from soil, to rotting fruit, to plastic chips packets, to clothes, and even to dead animals. Occasionally, there were pools of green, mucky coloured liquid that were bubbling as if they were alive, and with every step that I took, I could feel my feet sinking a few centimetres into the garbage that lay beneath them.
The most saddening, and worrying experience was talking to the rag-pickers. It is the job of a rag-picker to pick up any sort of garbage (that looks useable) from the landfill. They sell the junk to local dealers, and generally get a daily income of around Rs. 70. Most of them work in thin rubber chappals, and thin shorts that reach their knees, and rest by sitting on random rubbish from the landfill.
Perhaps the most horrible part of the situation was the feeling of helplessness that I got when we were talking to the rag-pickers. They live in the most filth and inhumane conditions imaginable, and they make their living by picking up things that they can find from Delhi’s dustbins. They did were not supplied with any sort of masks (like we were), and they pick away at the filth, unconcerned by the medical implications of doing so.
When we came away from the landfill, we knew that there was really nothing that we could do to help these people, as our pleas will fall on the deaf ears of an unconcerned government. We did, however, learn a lot from the trip, and will make sure that it was not wasted on us.
Simrat Dugal

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Interview - Nikhilesh Chand

Nikhilesh Chand left Vasant Valley School a few years back, to pursue a course in Chemistry at St. Stephens College. He was recently offered a full scholarship in Bio Natural Sciences to Trinity College, Cambridge. We asked him for his take on school, science and studies:
NL: What exactly are you doing in Cambridge?
NC: I’m planning to study Bio Natural Sciences. They are the upcoming areas of focus these days, with immense influences in pharmaceuticals, biotechnology and other fields of research. I’m looking forward to the world class teaching facilities, and specially the renowned teachers.
NL: What do you feel about career opportunities in India especially in your field and also other sciences?
NC: Well Sciences have started to come up in India. The state of things is much better now, than it was a few decades back. But, research in Europe and America is still leagues ahead.
NL: Most science students in school don’t know whether they want to pursue a professional course (like engineering or medicine) or something non technical (like chemistry honors).
NC: Yeah, most students follow the crowd and go after engineering and medicine without realizing what they want to do. I got a good rank in Delhi College of Engineering but I withdrew and got a chemistry honors at St. Stephens. I’m glad I made that decision because that’s what I wanted to do.
NL: After going to St. Stephens where do you think school has really helped you, and what do you think has changed in Vasant Valley?
NC: We’ve finally got school buses (laughs). School really gives you complete all round development. These are the best days of your life so you should enjoy them, but balance out everything equally: academics, extra curricular activities and fun.

Grease the Nut That Squeaks

Swagger, snide and strut
Here comes the squeaking nut.
Tall, Arrogant, imposing,
Judgmental- always supposing
Coming your way
You don’t know what to do or say
Except Pray,
Or maybe run away
But once he begins to bray
Opening his mouth wide-
There is nowhere to hide,
Saddle Up,
You’re along for the ride.
Yap, Yap, Yap
Trash, rubbish, scrap,
Each word- A trap.
A huge mental gap?
Sanity first
Then Eardrums burst,
Utter words- cursed
Bruised egos- badly nursed.
Don’t let yourself languish
Through torture and anguish!!
It needs a good greasing down,
Erase away the condescending frown.
Somebody help!
Help me please!
To silence the hinge that creaks.
Help! Help to grease
That silly nut, that only squeaks.
Simrat Dugal


“Let’s have egg less cakes without eggs”
Sonya Bhan, little confused about baking?

“Hey are those socks made of jeans?”
Nivedita Venkatesh, um, denim maybe?

“I have eaten all the kebabs alive!”
Kartikeya Khanna, ewww!!

“Does your pencil have ink?”
Nishant Singh, new invention???

“At least his cologne smells better than CH4!! Do you know what CH4 is?”
“Yea, of course I know what it is. CH4 is a cigarette.”
Rachit Khanna, what type of cigarette is that???

“3 toins are cossed.”
Krittivas Dalmia, tlip of the songue??

“Mera paani pet se bhar gaya.”
Vritima Wadhwa, watery thoughts!

The Island – A Review

The Island is a grossly under promoted film for its high caliber of cinema and production values- the recent trailers of the film depict it to be just another near future sci-fi fantasy flick, but there is so much more to the movie. For starters, the movie is set in the not-so distant future of 2019, and is based in a facility somewhere in the USA. The inhabitants of the facility seem to be in a vegetative state, calmly going about their daily routines of eating, studying, working and sleeping, never questioning their surrounding or environment.
The inhabitants were told that there is wide spread “contamination”, and that there is an island which is a safe haven for humanity to repopulate and to start over. All members of the facility were chosen in a random lottery to go to “the island”, where they can live in harmony for the rest of their days. This is the state of affairs till a resident, Lincoln 6 echo, starts to question his environment, and how, and why things in this facility seem to be in perfect order all the time, and his exact purpose there. Once he discovers the horrors of the true nature of the facility- that his whole life has been a lie and that he is more valuable dead than alive- he plans his escape with another member of the facility Jordon 2 Delta (a woman). From this point onwards the movie takes off as a fast paced tale of revelation and intrigue.
I won’t expose more of the story line, but it is safe to say that even the most critical of us won’t be able to guess what is going to happen next. It is amazing how the director Michael Bay executes the story line- the way the story unfolds is thrilling from start to finish. The special effects and action sequences deserve special mention; all action aficionados will find satisfaction watching the film. So go ahead and watch it, you might discover what the future has in store for all of us.
Samad Ali, XI-B

Editorial Board

Soumya Dasgupta, Mahi Titus, Jahan Adil Nargolwala, Tarunima Prabhakar, Diva Gujral, Akanksha Chawla, Ria Sen, Amba Kak, Arushi Chak, Saira Dayal, Arjun Srihari, Nakul Dev, Varini Sharma, Jagriti Seth, Saranya Mishra,
Rhea Maini, Simrat Dugal, Udit Vira, Nitya Vaishanavi Singh.

Mallika Sadh