August, 2008

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In the Inter House Science Quiz, held for classes 11 and 12, the Green House team, comprising of : Siddhartha Banerjee, Kunal Datta, Sidhanth Rao and Rohan Jain came first.
On Wednesday, 13th August, a Chemistry Multimedia competition was held for class 9.Students prepared presentations on the topic Natural Resources.
The results are as follows:
1st : Ritika Saini & Sarah Mirza
2nd : Yashoda Maliah & Purvah Chauhan, Mira Rajput, Ramya Ahuja & Priyanka Agarwal
In the ‘Poster making and Slogan Writing’ competition in Economics held for class 11 & 12, the following secured first position:
11 - Amulaya Vanga, Abhishek Munjal, Sanjana Mathur, Sanditi Gargya
12 - Pranav Sarin, Aneesha Dass, Drishti Vashisht, Aneesha Labroo
The Hiroshima Day Poster Making Competition for class 9, the team comprising of Megha Mehdiratta, Kalyani Day, Ishita Sethi, Malvika Arora and Nikhita Sagar secured first position.
In the Marketing Strategy Competition held for class 12, the team comprising of Pratyush Nanda, Shivam Raheja, Jahan Nargolwala and Abhay Singh came first.

Dance Performance on Independence Day


The Subroto Cup, one of the most prestigious football cups in Delhi came our way before we knew it. The monthly tests were about to start when we got the news of this tournament. At first, we were all reluctant to take part in it, and didn’t know how we were going to balance both. But after all, we ARE the Vasant Valley School football team... we can do anything!
Players from classes 9 to 11 participated, and our team comprised of Sanil Makhija, Gobind Sethi, Arnav Sahni, Karan Srivastav, Zoheb Khan, Raghav Wadhwa, Siddharth Seshan, Eshay Tobgel, Martand Singh, Aditya Lal, Rhiday Bhandari, Shoaib Kohli, Rachit Duggal, Varun Srivastav, Arjun Gupta, Avie Kakkar and Jaiveer Bakshi.
We started off with a 3-0 victory and carried on winning (more like thrashing our opponents) throughout. We played five matches in all, out of which our third match (quarterfinal) was against the reigning Subroto champions- Mamta Modern School. This game was extremely challenging for us as a team because this time, our opponents weren’t as easy to plough over as the ones we’d faced before. The game started off at a slow pace with VVS 1-0 up in the first half, and as we all know, that is not a tough score to chase. With us shaking in our spikes with pent up energy and feeling like we had to play extraordinarily in order to actually have this game fully in our control, there was no pressure at all! Thankfully, that’s exactly what happened when we scored 3 goals in a matter of only fifteen minutes all thanks to our strikers Sanil and Avie. They truly proved themselves that day, not to us (they didn’t need to as we already knew how competent they are) but to their own selves. We played as a team and won the game 4 goals to 0.
Before playing this game, I recall Coach Gogoi speaking to us. He said “If you boys win this game, we have a great chance of winning this tournament”. Even though this match was not as important as the finals, winning this game was crucial and would give us a huge chance of reaching and winning the final game. I know his words don’t sound very inspiring right now, but in that moment they were exactly what we needed to get us to put all of ourselves into it. And so we did. We gave it our best shot and, even if we do say so ourselves, made our coach proud.
The next two games did not even feel like the semi-final and final as we cruised through, winning each of those 5-0 and 6-1 respectively.
Playing this tournament made me realize the importance of working as a team. It was truly memorable for the entire squad and now, on reaching the nationals all we have to do is be patient for what awaits us inside the gates of the Dr. Ambedkar Stadium. I think the waiting is going to be harder than all the brilliant teams we’ve faced, put together!
Rhiday Bhandari

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Living Darfur

”We all might ask ourselves why we tune in to these more trivial matters and tune out when it comes to Darfur. “
-Nicholas D. Kristof
The Republic of Sudan is in a state of crisis and has been for the past five years. Darfur, in western Sudan, is at the epicenter of this problem .The people of Darfur have faced racial genocide of unimaginable ferocity and their homes and land have been burnt and damaged beyond repair. The conflict in Sudan has arisen mainly due to the totalitarian policies implemented by the Arab dominated government in Khartoum against the non- Arab Sudanese populace. Both racial and religious discrimination are rampant in this much-publicized arena of torture, and slave trade since the mid- nineties.
This mass scale social turmoil and angst took the shape of rebellion as is inevitable. It began in 2003 and was led by two major groups - Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), and the Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM). But the response from the government was swift and ruthless. They acquired the services of Arab camel rearing Nomads - the “Janjaweed”- to pillage Sudanese villages and to take innocent lives. They were well aware of the fact that this step would lead to the mass destruction of the Sudanese in all aspects including their ancient culture.
The Sudanese government has publicly denied any link with the Janjaweed - but it is a known fact that they are funding this genocide. 300,000 have died already. Hard though it may be to believe, this has been validated by the British Parliament.
Admittedly, some efforts are being made worldwide to put an end to the atrocities being propagated by the Arabs. But these efforts are facing strong opposition from the ruling government which hinders their attempts to gather information amongst other things. What doesn’t help either is that the western leaders are turning a blind eye to the atrocities being encouraged by the Sudanese ‘government’.
We, as a Global society, must intervene and stop this destruction. It is shocking to witness the apathy that we have all shown, concerning ourselves only with those issues which directly affect our lives or have a media-publicized economic, political or security impact on the world, while these tribes are left to a grim and uncertain future in which they are certain to encounter terror, hardship and pain.
This is just one of the numerous issues that darken our world. Today, in the age of the internet, we have the empowerment to mobilize ourselves through popular forums like blogs etcetera to link with every part of the world and make that difference…if only we choose to care.
-Raghav Raizada, X


"A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject"
Winston Churchill


1. Barbie’s full name is Barbara Millicent Roberts and her boyfriend Ken was not sold in India until recently because it clashed with the traditional arranged marriage.
2. Hundreds of years ago, only the extremely wealthy used to wear underwear.
3. Being unmarried can shorten a man’s life by ten years.
4. In Japan, the number four is considered to be unlucky because the Japanese word for four sounds very similar to the word death.
5. In New York City, approximately 1,600 people are bitten by other humans annually.
6. The average four year-old child asks over four hundred questions a day.


A few days ago, while I was on my way back home from a long and grvelling trip to who-knows-where, I got stuck in what is called ‘office traffic.’ This was unexpected and unwelcome as I was travelling on a relatively unused road. Yet there it was, fulfilling its purpose – to annoy every single person stuck in it until they shed tears of frustration – to the T. For an hour I was entertained by a 'cacophonous melody' of blaring horns, car screeching and the infamous FM playing in the car. As time passed by, commuters started losing their patience. The honks became more frequent and the drivers more irate. Distances that could have been covered in fifteen minutes on foot, had taken half an hour by car, and we were more than sick of it all. We realized that the massive traffic jam was a result of the absence of a traffic policeman at the crossroad a few meters ahead. The annoyance mounted and I started cursing the police as well as the defunct administration of this country. I was recounting to myself all the things (and believe me, they were numerous) that I could have done in the time I would have saved had I not encountered this traffic jam, when the traffic finally started moving. What a relief!
As we passed the crossroad, we saw a man sweating in his formal office clothes, directing the cars. Guilt overwhelmed me. I was sitting in an air conditioned car criticizing the situation but not bothering to do anything about it, and here was this man, standing in 45o Celsius, working at fixing the flow of traffic. And now I wondered what this man, who had probably been travelling back from office, could have done in the time he would have saved had he just ‘let it be’, and continued to travel in the snail speed traffic. Yet he gave up his own comfort so that the other five hundred-or-so cars could reach their destinations faster. It must have taken courage to stand in front of all those glaring front lights, and to guide all the cars. The man was not there preaching, or criticizing. He stood there leading all of us. At that moment he was a hero.
Tarunima Prabhakar


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India: Present Continuous

Having celebrated 61 years of her freedom just a few days back, India presides over the world’s largest democracy, embracing countless cultures, languages and religions. She basks in the praise of world leaders for her transformation from an impoverished British colony to a potential global super power.
India’s diverse economy encompasses agriculture, handicrafts, textiles, manufacturing, and a multitude of services which are much sought after by companies for the outsourcing of their customer services and technical support.
Although, India is now an economic force to reckon with, two- thirds of the population still earns its living directly or indirectly through agriculture, and the booming service sector employs a mere fraction of the workforce.
The picture is greatly complicated by vast socio-economic differences. The poor and wealthy live side by side in both urban and rural areas. The most poverty stricken states of Bihar, Orissa, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, also have to contend with the largest and fastest growing populations. Even more disconcerting is the pitiful gender ratio of 927 girls for every 1000 boys under the age of 6, caused by the horrific prevalence of female infanticide coupled with the lack of education and awareness, and the failure to enforce legislation.
Discrimination prevails not just between genders but also between different religious communities. Throughout the nation religious differences are significant, especially among the Hindu majority and rather large Muslim minority.
But the one difference that crosscuts all differences of religion, region, gender, language and wealth, is caste. The people of India belong to hierarchically ordered groups ranging from the “untouchables” to the respected Brahmins. And it is this division, which often decides a person’s life.
Having gained independence not too long ago, India is still coming to terms with its new found freedom. There are multiple challenges that are still to be faced on our path to creating a “new and improved” India.
Boasting of the largest youth population on Earth and a thriving middle class, India surely has huge potential.
But changes will only begin the day when we, as Indians, truly believe that our goals are achievable; it is then that the inertia we seem to have been gripped by will no longer hold us back. And this conviction in ourselves will help us surge ahead on the road to development.
Let that day be TODAY.
Sanjana Malhotra

Performance by the Teachers


Dear Editor,
St. Stephens. The word itself arouses in me an urge to upgrade my ambitions and sometimes even curse my own religion and caste. No, I am not an OBC embarrassed by the title, but neither am I a Christian. However, what importance does this inane, worthless fact hold in my life? Unfortunately, its importance is massive today. For if I am not a Christian student, it is possible, I might not be able to pursue my college education from one of the most prestigious educational institutions of India- St. Stephens.
I am not going to examine this controversial topic from the perspective of a dedicated Stephanian or alumni, but from the eyes of a future aspirant. In my view, reservation of seats up to 50 percent for Christians is blasphemous. Evidently, there is bound to be a rift between the authorities, namely the “Mafia” bishops and the Supreme Court, and the college members, since this bizarre step endangers the very secular credentials of the college.
Moreover, the demand for reservations for a particular sect or group never had a sensible justification since the admission process is not based on merit anyways. Providing reservations is like showering unnecessary privileges on a group of people, while diminishing chances of a more deserving candidate. Therefore, while we are expected to climb the rugged mountains of Everest, the Christians and to some extent the SC/ST’s can simply climb a few hills and be admitted to St. Stephens!
What binds Mani Shanker Iyer, Amitav Ghosh, Shashi Tharoor, Shekhar Kapoor and Pakistani dictator Zia-Ul-Alaq? They are all alumni of this reputed institution and are all from religions and castes pointing in varied directions. Yet, they have achieved immense success and recognition world over. So, why this decision to change the system instantly and create controversy?
Ironically, in the last forty years, the college has not been able to fill its Christian quota of forty percent. Therefore, it is evident that depriving general category students does not make sense. Most of the faculty members are also opposed to this arbitrary decision of the Supreme Court, without any involvement of the governing body of the college. To add to the college's agony, in order to preserve the college’s Christian character- the college is now looking at increasing the number of Christian teachers. This step too would hamper the quality of teaching in the college.
In a nutshell, the inevitable question arises, where does the essence of this agency lie? In the fact that for three memorable years, students make this place their holy abode, learning and growing as potential individuals or that the much coveted college’s reputation is gradually eroding because of the apparent sake of equality, while completely ignoring merit and letting religion overrule us completely.
Yours sincerely,
Karan Arya, XI B

The class 12 students enjoy their last Independence Day

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Save Earth
Save some paper, save some paper
We will kill our earth with waste of paper,
Save a bit, a bit of paper
Use it but don’t misuse it
Don’t cut trees to get more paper
If you cut one, plant two rather
Try please try please to save more paper,
So our earth can live more safer.
Trisha Bansal 3B

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The Dolphin's Cry

You live in turmoil. No order.
We do not actively kill each other.
You take your lives in war.
And then you decide
To take ours.
We have learned your ways.
Learn ours!

You make us play and become the court jester,
So we can make you laugh,
Just so we can eat.
We do not ask you for such.
A few of you treat us well when you contain us,
Trying to learn more of us
While keeping us healthy.
We appreciate that.
We have learned your ways,
Learn ours!

We like your contact.
But we also like your respect.
Those of us who know not the wild,
Happily dwell on your confinements,
Without regret.
But those of us of the wild,
We like you,
But we like our
Freedom too.
We have learned your ways,
Learn ours!

Until you choose to learn from us,
In our world,
You will understand little of us.
We have learned your ways.
Learn ours!
Krishna S. Gupta XI B


A baby lies hungry in a village,
She screams out for food
A child searches for his parents in war torn Iraq,
He screams their names out
A cop accepts a bribe from Hindu extremists,
Muslims screams echo unheard
An atom bomb was dropped on Hiroshima in 1945,
Japanese scream out in pain and despair
China goes ahead with the Olympic Games,
Tibetans scream out in protest
Thousands of trees are cut down every day,
Animals scream out at the loss
Stand up. Speak up.
Don’t live life in
By Niyati Singh XI C

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A Trip To The Granary

The smell of delicious breakfast woke me up in the morning. I could hear my family chatting in the courtyard. I ran down the stairs and asked my mother what she had made for breakfast. She replied by saying that there was milk, melons, homemade bread, pomegranate juice and pears.”I ate my breakfast and went to the bathroom to have a bath. I wore my new prettily patterned robe and gold necklace and went to meet my father who was a farmer. He told me to come with him to the haat and then to the granary to store the extra grains . I was too excited to even reply.
We loaded the grains and hopped onto the bullock cart. We reached the haat and began our work. Within an hour we sold our grain and headed for the granary where the extra grain was kept. My hard work was appreciated by my father, thus he bought me a coloured beaded necklace as a reward.
It was a tiring day and as soon as we reached home we gobbled up our dinner and went to sleep.
Kavya Srivatsa 4

Children flying kites during the
Independence day celebrations

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Life Is A Meadow...

Many eyes go through it
But few see the flowers
Many a meadow is black-
Burnt with ash and buried with bodies from war.
It's not the black ash that lies on the ground
Or the smog and dirty folklore that surrounds it
But soil that lies deep beneath it
That reaps daisies one day...
Tenzin Varma, 8 C


I wish I were a zoologist,
That I will make a list,
If I was shifted to London,
Then my job would be done!
My manager wouldn’t complain about me,
Be he’d do so about others, angrily!
Tigers and whales face extinction,
But I’ll have to save ‘em before devastation,
Poachers may kill the others,
As it’s just a myth that bullets are made of feathers,
My plans are always right,
That criminals receive a poisonous snake bite!
I the next 50 years, Global Warming shall destroy us,
I have to save it before the Earth explodes,
Polar regions are melting and killing the wild,
Animals are in grave danger,
If I wont get my job done,
The Earth’s time is up!
Naman Mishra, 7


When I got drenched by the rain,
I felt exultant, as if a dragon I had slain.
It pricked me somewhere; in my mind it made a dent
That’s when I realized what life really meant.
Once you think, you’ll get to know,
if you explore; let it grow;
like a wild creeper, in a meadow, a field
one day a daisy, it will yield.
When we are lost, thoughts are muddled,
together in the cold, we are huddled.
Look inside, and you will find
something that would help our hearts to bind.
The rain poured down on me,
It metamorphed me, it set my soul free.
I left the world, sorrow and pain all that’s good, yet not in vain; I learnt what’s pure, true and wise,
It was the rain – tears from the Lord’s eyes!
Tenzin Verma 8C


The die is cast... exhaust pipes blast a deafening fanfare;
There is tension in the pit lane and thunder in the air.
Malaysia’s formula one race track – a furnace of raw power As its fever grips the faithful that waited for this hour.

You feel the ground shaking beneath the trumpet blast...
Any second now the lights will change the future to the past.
Every driver in his cockpit feels it jarring through his knees
As the heat inside his suit approaches fifty-odd degrees.

Now it’s all-on in a moment... in a blinding flash of time
With the decibels responding to the tacho needle’s climb;
Screaming rubber scorches tarmac, in a frantic bid for traction
In a symphony of sound begins the awesome full-on action.

There are two Ferraris foremost, with McLaren close behind
There’s a Honda belching smoke and fire, and Arrows flying blind;
There are Jordan’s, Jags and Williams, and they’re fighting for their lives,
On their Pit Mechanic’s shoulders, rests who fails... and who survives.

Then, a sudden expectation fell upon the thronging crowds
As a change of weather threatened in the dark, foreboding clouds.
Now the mighty tacticians gamble for a second’s worth of gain
Lies defeated in the slipstream of a race-car in the rain.

There is contact on the airwaves, there is frenzy in the pits
There is victory in the offing for the man who keeps his wits.
It’s a teasing game of patience, but the track begins to dry
Now the prancing horse is dancing beneath the lightening of the sky.

Here is Michael on the rampage... in his eyes, a glint of steel;
There’s McLaren close behind him, with the Scot behind the wheel;
There’s a flying Dutchman driving as he’s never done before
And a Finn who’s pulling all the stops to even up the score.

It’s a battle of endurance in the ever rising heat,
But those scything red Ferrari’s never seem to miss a beat.
Not a sign of overheating, nor a faint ignition lag;
It’s a one-two high-speed convoy right up to the chequered flag.

There was justice in the victory... it was true, and well deserved
By the men who wore the laurels, and by those who also served.
And the gallant Finn, he was there... a third upon the day;
But shall surely rise, no compromise - for that’s McLaren’s way.

It was a battle of endurance in the ever rising heat,
But those scything red Ferrari’s never seem to miss a beat.
-S. Aditya Kumar, 11

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Cow painting festival – In the month of April, the city of Luxembourg comes alive with fiber glass, paper, wood and shiny metal. Cows are doused with a host of hues which represent ones traits. For the grand finale, throngs of crowds come out to see bare-bodied people ride like lunatics on their whacky creations.
La Tomatina - Forget all the manners and advice Ms. Etiquette taught you. It’s time to paint the town red! The world’s biggest food fight draws thousands to this minute Spanish town where every single thing from the people to the buildings and animals are covered in a soggy, red, pulp-like mash.
Cooper’s Hill Annual Cheese Roll – No injury can be truly drastic unless it is caused by mounds of gooey - yellow chunks of cheese. Yes… We’re talking about people chasing a ball of cheese (as big as the state of Gloucester) down a hill. No, seriously. The cuts, bruises, fractures and broken bones can be truly fatal.
Frog Fest – To quote a serious resident “You can buy a frog or rent one”. It’s every witch’s lucky day in Louisiana to utilize green toads for all purposes! These unsightly creatures are used for various activities, races and cuisine. A bunch of frogs, crazy people and over- excitement spells a recipe for disaster.
Golden Shears Sheep Shearing Festival - India’s claim to fame is its myriad cows littering the streets. But in New Zealand, sheep shearing is the battleground for those seeking fame and fortune. Rearers enjoy a day of battles, insults and Bah-Bah sounds made by the squirming sheep. Since it began in 1961, the festival has gotten so vast that sometimes the army is called in to control the wild crowd.
Punch-a-Mate – This absurd fest originated in the hectic, jam – packed streets of New York. Don’t be alarmed if someone jumps out of a yellow cab and punches you straight on the nose for rash driving or honking like a fog-horn. This lasts for a week in October. So be careful, you may just be left with more than just a broken nose.
The Baby Jumping Festival – This Catholic festival is celebrated in Spain. Grown men dressed in funky Elvis costumes complete with side burns and snazzy sunglasses leap over new born babies with parental consent. This process helps in cleansing the baby of all evil. By God! Leave your baby with the sitter!
Fiesta of Near-Death Experiences – This unusual event held in the streets of Las Nieves (near Portugal) is for people who have come close to death, but have been saved by a miracle. Thus people are adorned with morbid clothes and speak of how they almost ended up in a coffin and discuss their misfortunes. Make sure to keep a few tissues handy to soak the sorrows away!
The Wisconsin State Chip Throw – During Labour Day weekend, residents of Prairie du Sac gather and hurl sun dried cow dung on each other! Contestants are not allowed to use gloves and may lick their fingers after chucking the chips. So brace yourself and get ready to taste some new exotic flavours!
Hadaka Matsuri – Talk about male bonding! In this creepy event, a pack of scantily-clad men go to houses asking for candy. In the middle of winter. This is a re-creation of Hallloween, but in this case the people are actually terrifying!!
Tara Sen

Tactful Tricky Tongue Twisters

If Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers,
where’s the peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked?
Six thick thistle sticks. Six thick thistles stick.
She sells sea shells by the sea shore.
The shells she sells are surely seashells.
So if she sells shells on the seashore,
I’m sure she sells seashore shells.
A flea and a fly flew up in a flue.
Said the flea, “Let us fly!”
Said the fly, “Let us flee!”
So they flew through a flaw in the flue.
Lesser leather never weathered wetter weather better.
Vincent vowed vengeance very vehemently.

Aneesha Labroo: What’s a saala relationship-wise?
Kavya Bagga: Umm…
Aneesha Labroo: Oh yeah! It’s your husband’s wife!
Call for divorce, girl! He’s cheating on you with your brother!
Drishti Vasisht: Where did you go, Aneesha?
Aneesha Labroo: I went to go upstairs!
Next time thought to think and speak!
Avanti Gupta: Haha, today Aneesha said “I went to go upstairs!”
Gaurhari Sanghi: That’s right only! I- went- no it isn’t!
And enlightenment strikes! Yep, he’s out.
Jai Seth: Why do these stupid buses have curtains?
Avanti Gupta: To keep the sun out.
Sara Chatterjee: Yaaa! So that we can sleep at night!
Good night, sleep tight- don’t let the sun hurt your eyes at night!

The Junior School choir performs at the Celebrations

Editorial Board:

Mallika Pal, Ramya Ahuja, Suvira Chadha, Tejasvita Singh, Vani Shriya, Vedika Berry, Ayesha Malik, Devika Agrawal, Nikhil Pandhi, Sanjana Malhotra, Tara Sen, Arushi Kumar, Bhavik Singh, Kunal Datta, Meghna Mann, Rhea Sadh, Sara Chatterjee, Vanshika Wadhwa, Akbar Iqbal, Avanti Gupta, Jahan Nargolwala, Mahi Titus, Soumya Dasgupta, Tarunima Prabhakar

Editor: Diva Gujral