Hey, my name is Rajveer
Hey there! I’m so happy you’re here! I’m Rajveer Batra (he/him), a 17-year-old student from Mumbai, India. Before you scroll any further, let me tell you about myself.
I’m a twin brother, for starters! But besides that, I am a member of the Student Government, my school’s Round Square Student Committee Chair, the President of the Debate Club, the President of ECOFIN (GA2) at India’s largest THIMUN conference (DAIMUN) and just a friendly, sociable student. Academically, I was recently awarded the Academic Excellence Award from my school.
One of my greatest joys, aside from public speaking and debating, however, is writing! Not only do I blog for several online websites, but I am also the Chief Editor of my school’s annual yearbook – The Insignia. As a History and Economics student, I hope to get into either law or politics in the future!
My passions have led me around the world…
MODEL UNITED NATIONS
Schools from every corner of India and the Gulf joined arms at the Indian High School located in one of the world’s leading cities, Dubai, to take part in the Indian High School Model United Nations Conference. I was merely 12 when I went for this conference, and I was given the most important role in my committee: Dwight Eisenhower in the Cold War Cabinet. This was possibly my scariest MUN experience.
I remember landing in Dubai – the only child in a group of teenagers. I wasn’t scared though. I made some of my closest friends on that trip. My seniors guided me through everything. We sang songs like Budapest by George Ezra at the back of the bus.
The conference was hard. I may have unknowingly declared World War 3. Regardless, I think it made things more interesting. For one of my first ever Model UN experiences, I’d say it was a fantastic experience.
MODEL UNITED NATIONS
THIMUN Singapore was first established in 2004 as a sister conference to The Hague International Model United Conference. The annual gathering of delegates and chairs brings together a wide range of personas. From China to France, pupils, and teachers from all around the world travel to the Lion City to participate in this highly esteemed conference.
In great spirits, I explored Singapore before jumping into debate. I headed to the Bugis Mall where I tasted some local Japanese cuisine. I explored the city centre and the Gardens by the Bay, a conservatory and greenhouse. There were complete ecosystems set up (with an indoor waterfall, too!). In awe, I meandered through this man-made wonder. My friends and I dined at the Marina Bay Mall, and then travelled on foot to Marina Bay to observe a water and light display, which was simply spellbinding.
2019’s THIMUN Conference Agendas were engaging and interesting – whether it was the Question of Kashmir in GA1, or the issue of rising support for Anti – Vaccination (aka Anti-Vax Moms) in the ECOSOC. Many committees saw intense power struggles. I loved it.
The conference saw my fellow delegates and I waiting with bated breath to see our resolutions ratified. Once the bloc’s resolution was ratified by the chair, main submitters would make the exciting journey to the approval panel. The approval panel is where resolutions are taken from a collaboration of ideas and clauses to a resolution ready for an upcoming debate. Delegates work within their respective schools on resolutions and then bring them together with like-minded delegates to form one or two resolutions from the bunch.
By the end of the 5 day trip, I was enriched with what was a fantastic experience. I’d be lying if I said that running around Universal Studios wasn’t a highlight of my trip, but doing Model UN in such a fantastic place – humbled me.
MODEL UNITED NATIONS
The opening ceremony at Liceo Farnesina School in Rome was probably the most grandiose event hosted in any MUN conference I have attended to date. It was perfectly organised in a grand hall with delicate Roman Architecture and the flags of many illustrious nations. After a few inspiring speeches by the Secretariat the various ambassadors gave a full overview of their agendas and policies before concluding the ceremony with the banging of the gavel by the Secretary General.
On the first day of RIMUN, I realised just how large this conference was. The delegates came from various places, including Germany and Brazil. I began lobbying with them for the rest of the day, forming blocks and discussing agendas. Armed with resolutions, I marched into committee the next day ready to debate to my heart’s content.
All around me there was a tinge of nervousness in the air, of students frantically learning their main submitter speeches, going through them and correcting them over and over again, but excitement was the emotion that dominated. A day of vigorous debate followed. Committees discussed resolution after resolution, and all around you could only see students hard at work, adding, deleting but through it all, supporting each other in their common goal to make the resolutions perfect. The hard work did pay off. Rome, you’ve won my heart.
The Inventure Academy Round Square Youth Parliament was a unique and incredible experience! To me, it was even more meaningful as I had the one-off opportunity to contribute to and be a part of the special Civil Society committee. The committee worked on two main agendas – cyber security and education – from a very different perspective as compared to any other committee I’ve ever been a part of. We were tasked with playing the roles of civilians (I was the head of a multinational social media empire) and using our roles to influence the debate of other committees like the UNGA, UNESCO, Lok and Rajya Sabha to meet our agendas and produce resolutions or bills that agreed with our stance. I found this incredibly interesting as it forced me to think from a new perspective, make the most of lobbying time and include emotion in a setting that I normally wouldn’t ever think of including it!
When we weren’t sitting in other committees and trying to further our agendas, we were either having interactive guest lectures by experts on cybercrime and education, doing fun activities involving sticking post-its with various perspectives written on them on the walls and getting to know our fellow delegates, or working tirelessly in our groups to create new solutions to already existing problems that we would put into a charter and send to the Karnataka state government to discuss amend and hopefully adopt into state law and maybe even national law! This experience was definitely one of the best learning experiences I have ever had.
I visited Belfast, Northern Ireland for a Round Square Conference hosted by Rockport School, from the 12th to the 16th of March, 2019, to mark the fifth anniversary of the school and celebrate the theme – ‘Our Changing Environment’. This Conference was truly like no other. Not only did we meet people from across the globe, but we also made many friends with different views, different personalities and different lifestyles; but that’s what made us closer. I saw this spark of connection and the love of exploration in each delegate attending the Conference, making it one of my best experiences!
I was exposed to the theme of ‘Democracy’ with a visit to the Parliament Building. Here I was shown two of the meeting rooms and was given a brief history of the building and the procedure of legislation in Ireland. The first room was the main Legislative Hall where all the 90 members would meet and discuss new laws and other legal matters. Here I participated in a debate on – ‘Should the legal age be reduced to 16 years’? During the debate, I was trained to raise a point during the debate and the formal procedure of voting in Ireland. The second room was for one committee of eleven members and I was shown the dispatch boxes. During the presentation my friends and I were told how the building was hidden during the Second World War and what kind of Constitution was formed to include the unionists and nationalists.
Belfast is known for its experience of all four seasons in a single day. In Belfast, seldom does one see garbage or heavy traits of pollution. A close relationship and concern for its environment was effectively portrayed when I got an opportunity to clean up the forest. Here, I was made to clear pathways and separate the different kinds of logs. The dead leaves and logs were going to be reused and recycled to benefit the people. This initiative depicts the close relationship between the society, the environment and their combined efforts at creating a sustainable lifestyle.
This conference was one of my best experiences. From making friends from Atlanta to Karachi, or playing card games, to facing the winds of the Giant Causeway, it was truly a trip to remember.
I arrived at the Emerald Heights International School, greeted with the familiarity and warmth, with traditional Indian drums and pearl necklaces. The comfort exhumed from that welcome assured me that the week before me would be rich in culture, love, and friendship. On arrival, I was acquainted with 700 students from 6 continents and over 156 schools. It was momentous.
Day 1 started with a breathtaking flag ceremony. I saw schools I never knew existed and places from all across the world proudly displayed their flags. I moved into the first keynote speech by Mr. Kailash Satyarthi. Mr. Satyarthi was a Nobel Peace Prize laureate who taught me about how each one needs to take a stand in life. “If not you, then who? Who will save the world from its devastating problems?” It was an extremely inspiring speech.
The second day of the Round Square International Conference was eventful and exciting. From witnessing some really enriching cultural performances from international schools to having the opportunity to listen to the day’s keynote speakers- Sophia the humanoid robot, and Ms. Kiran Gandhi, musician and activist- it was an eventful day.
Before I knew it, Day 5 had arrived. Despite the sad atmosphere that kept growing as the conference came to an end, beginning the day with a 3 km run in the morning for cancer awareness kept my spirits up! The keynote speakers kept me on my toes with their energizing and interactive talks.
The day and conference came to a close with the closing ceremony, a vibrant after-party and tearful goodbyes. I left the conference with memories, knowledge and friends that will stay with me forever.
I’ve gone to Verbier in 2016, 2017 and 2018 to Ski. After 3 years of dedicated skiing I was able to secure the Level 7 Certificate. My school took students every year to take part in a Ski Coaching Program. We would go for a period of 8 days and learn everything – from snow – plowing to ski jumping. I went from bunny slopes to skiing off piste. These trips are the highlights of my school life. I feel so privileged to have been able to go for 3 consecutive years to Switzerland to do a sport I love dearly. While there, we explored Geneva and the town of Verbier. I had the best crepes at the Milk Bar, and bought out the entirety of X-Treme Fitness wear. Skiing taught me discipline, patience, and how to be calm. I can still picture myself up on the ski slopes.