LitStock 2023 — LDQ’s Annual Freshers’ Literary Fest

To invigorate the Manipal fervour for all things Literature, Quiz and Debate, LDQ (The Literary, Debate and Quiz Club of Manipal) hosted their annual freshers’ fest ‘LitStock’, which featured a range of competitions that had Manipal’s brightest minds facing off in a battle of wits. The week-long fest saw competitions that tested the warriors, who, emerged victorious from their battle. After all, as the saying goes, the pen is mightier than the sword.

23rd April 2023 – Debate Workshop
On Sunday, April 23rd, LDQ (The Literary, Debate and Quiz Club of Manipal) held a debate workshop aimed towards first years interested in improving their critical thinking skills and looking to participate in the upcoming debates in LitStock ‘23. Led by Rithvik, Aryaman, Sanchit and Srujana, who are experts at analysis and debates, the workshop provided a clear understanding of the value of equity and rules to follow when participating in a debate, along with tools and techniques to build a solid case.

The workshop began with Aryaman explaining the flow and roles of the speakers during a debate. After the participants present their statements, the adjudicators score the speakers primarily based on the case’s integrity and manner of presentation. A brief explanation of POIs or Points of Information was provided where details like protected time and the inability to follow up were highlighted. The discussion soon progressed to the most the rebuttal phase. While it is understandably argumentative, it is essential to properly phrase one’s statements to stay within ethical guidelines and ensure that personal attacks are entirely avoided.

Key Takeaways to Be a Good Debater:
The speakers discussed general advice and tips to improve one’s debating skills. Aryaman and Rithvik started by highlighting an experience where they built a rock-solid case during a debate competition but lost due to a misunderstanding of a legal term in the motion they were given. They had a solid case but on a different motion!
Tip: Read the given motion multiple times to avoid ambiguity.

The second most important thing to remember is to use simple terms and coherent language so the layman can grasp your case. “Essentially, your adjudicator will be a blank slate, and whatever they hear from your explanation is what they will interpret”, explained Srujana.
Tip: Use simple, coherent language. Avoid complex words and unnecessary technical jargon.

After a mock debate to familiarise the participants with the procedure, an engaging discussion ensued. The panel pointed out the shortcomings and praised the strengths of the cases participants presented. The workshop provided essential insights that piqued one’s curiosity about how students could apply these skills.

24th April & 1st May – Potpourri
LitStock’s Potpourri event called for the participants to put their thinking caps on and engage in games that ranged from puzzles to wordplay and puns. In this battle of words, Anshu Kantipudi won first place, Aseem Anand came in a close second, and Kanaad Ghaisas followed right after in third place.

26th April 2023 – JAM (Just A Minute)
The participants broke a sweat in the JAM, where they were expected to speak for one minute without using any filler words and obliging all the rules that the moderator set. The pressure intensified as each participant was ready to pounce on their neighbour. Tensions rose as objections were raised left, right and centre. As the tensions rose, so did the stakes; the topics became increasingly bizarre, the participants scrambling for words as their opponents buzzed them at every turn. Nishit Kashyap was victorious, winning the first place, with Amitesh Jha in the second place and Sharanya Anumula in the third place.

27th April 2023 – Music-N-Movies Quiz
On 27th April 2023, LDQ kick-started the fifth day of their annual fresher’s-exclusive event, LitStock, with the Music-N-Movies Quiz. A startling 24 teams had registered for the preliminary round. The quizmasters helped participants with a sprinkling of hints wherever necessary as long as they were not being blocked by the majority of contesting teams.

Theme of the Quiz:
The Music-N-Movies Quiz consisted largely of questions about renowned films, movie series, and songs prevalent in pop culture. The quiz’s purview spanned an expansive arsenal of Hollywood and Bollywood films and songs belonging to various genres. The preliminary round required contestants to be constantly on their toes to answer the questions and move to the next ones quickly. The participants put their skills to the test as they braved the ambiguous questions. The quiz also succeeded in involving all teams in an exhilarating experience with everyone engaged throughout the whole 2 hours.

28th-30th April – Manipal Fresher’s Writing Tournament
Writers and poets from yonder seas sailed their ships to MIT to participate in the Writing Tournament. Anchoring their ships, with pens at the ready, they got to work, penning odes of love to tales of bravery, weaving a story with a flick of their wrists. A form was sent out, encouraging writers to pen their take on the reversed roles of the antagonist, the protagonist, and the third-person point of view in the infamous stories of Robin Hood and Julius Caesar. This competition encouraged the talented minds of Manipal to hone their skills as writers and stretch the fabric of their imagination. Bringing their stories to life with their mighty control of the lexicon, Anjela Anna Jossy placed first, and Yoihen Elangbam placed second.


25th & 30th April 2023 – Manipal Freshers’ Quiz Tournament

The quiz saw its contestants scratching their heads in concentration as they attempted to answer ‘A Thousand Splendid Questions About Everything Under the Sun.’ Participants, volunteers and on-lookers alike filled the room. The finals of the general quiz organised by LDQ took place on 30th April 2023. As the rules and flow of the quiz were being explained, everyone listened intently and with utmost focus. There were four rounds, of which the first and third were written, and the second and fourth were ‘Bounce and Pounce’.

ROUND 01 & 03:
In these rounds, the teams were presented with textual and audio-visual questions. As the question was read, the teams were supposed to write the answers on the sheet of paper provided. The second round was based on  stock tickers; the stock exchange, NASDAQ, and NYSE. Hints were given at the quizmaster’s discretion, if the quizmaster saw majority people blocking, then they would abstain from giving hints. As soon as the rounds were over, the answer sheets were exchanged between the teams and they checked the answers and marked each other as the answers were being announced; following which the scores of each team were recorded and we had a leading team.

ROUND 02 & 04:
These two rounds were ‘bounce and pounce’ rounds, i.e., participants either pounce if they know the answer and it is not their turn, or they wait for the question to bounce from team to team until it reaches them. The rounds or ‘dries’ had questions displayed on the screen and the teams started pouncing. After closing the pounce window, they would direct a team to say their answer. The correct ones would get the marks. This round brought a bush over the crowd. Who will pounce first? There was much more competition than in the previous two rounds because everyone wanted to be at the top and win the game. At the end of the game, we had a winner with 230 points.

Even though the quiz was over and the tie-breaker round went unsolved, all the nine teams solved the tie-breaker round, not for points, but for their merriment. This shows that even in such a race, we can have healthy competition. Finally, Bhargav Sadari and Sai Rithvik Nama placed first while Aseem Anand, Disha Jain and Rishabh Mandal placed second.


28th April – 1st May 2023 – Manipal Freshers’ Debate Tournament
The fest proceeded with high stakes and higher rewards. The participants geared up, ready to face the debate. The debate consisted of four rounds and a final, of which various themes were presented on which the contestants had to debate. The motion of the first round revolved around the topic of ‘relationships’ wherein the contestants were given a scenario of love versus familial acceptance which they had to debate. The second round saw a debate on the pop culture theme, where the ethics of superheroes was questioned. Round three consisted of a debate on the pioneering of one global agenda rather than multiple localised agendas. Round four took an educational turn in discussing media curation and consumption of bite-sized information and its impacts.

The atmosphere in the room was palpable as the final round of the debate competition began. The motion set for the occasion sparked a heated discussion among the participants and the audience: “This House would allow the sale of personality traits and characteristics.” The two sides presented compelling arguments, each trying to sway the judges with their reasoning. The government team argued that selling qualities or attributes, such as intelligence or physical abilities, could help level the playing field for marginalised groups. They proposed that individuals lacking in society could prevail further by allowing people to purchase these qualities. They also argued that government intervention and regulation could prevent misuse and ensure that the sale of qualities was conducted fairly and ethically.

On the other hand, the opposition team believed such a practice would lead to certain members being ostracised. They argued that the sale of qualities would create a class system where those who could afford to purchase desirable traits would be at an unfair advantage over those who could not.

As the debate progressed, the tension in the room continued to build. Both sides presented well-reasoned arguments, but in the end, the opposition team was declared the winner. Their argument, which highlighted the potential negative consequences of selling qualities or attributes and creating a class system, was better analysed by the judges than the government team’s proposal. The opposition’s emphasis on the potential for discrimination and marginalisation, and their concerns over the government’s ability to regulate the practice, proved to be more convincing to the judges. The team ‘Bruh’, consisting of members Lakshya Jha and Atharv Mishra, emerged victorious, with the team ‘The Base’, consisting of members Adith Vikram and Rishav Paudel, followed as a close runner-up. Aseem Anand deservedly won the title of Best Speaker.

The week-long Literary fest concluded with hearty congratulations to all the winners and an encouraging pat on the back to all participants. Finally, LDQ heaved a long, tired sigh of relief; another LitStock done right.


Written by MTTN Crew

Edited by Akanksha Banerjee for MTTN

Featured Image by LDQ


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