Having been born in India, a victim to one of the world’s most devastating violent-non-state actors, the haunting images of the Mumbai attacks 2009 left a lasting impression on me. The perpetrators came from our immediate neighbour Pakistan, once our brethren but now our adversaries. For a 9 year old, it was intriguing as to how a motley group could paralyse a bustling metropolis like Mumbai for 4 days. The aftermath of this event left me stupefied and inadvertently I started skimming through magazines and newspapers to further feed my childhood curiosity.
A miasma of distrust and conflict has always affected India, Pakistan relations in a very profound way; the simmering discord with her immediate neighbour has given rise to a rhetoric that is so belligerent and bellicose that it has generated ramifications throughout the Indian Subcontinent. However I strongly believe that such an animosity is passé and both countries need to rethink their attitudes and change the narratives Being in a politically adrenalized family and ever too eager to know about events that defined my country’s past and present ,I found myself in the midst of political discourses .Reading internationally acclaimed magazines like the TIME and The Economist challenged and expanded my horizon. I read books like ” Understanding International Relations” by Chris Brown taking baby steps into this complex web of transnational politics little realising that this was a precursor to my dalliance with IR. Going further down the rabbit hole, I was fascinated by the intricacies of war and the maintenance of peace; the power play and lobbying within the international system; and the ever evolving nature of the state and non-state actors.
My commitment to my school community has been quite rewarding and enriching as I’ve successfully managed to engage in a potpourri of activities, be it academics, co-curricular or extra-curricular. . My school Pallikoodam, which boasts of illustrious alumni like Arundhati Roy, has exposed me to a plethora of opportunities, further adding firepower to my arsenal. It is safe to say that via active participation in various Model United Nations , I have been exposed to the multifaceted world of International relations. Ilearned to synchronize knowledge and ideas and sort them in clear, logical, well construed arguments. Being the president of the MUN Club, I have managed to groom and mentor a 50 strong contingent which under my stewardship, brought in accolades.
Without being a dictator, I was able to delegate tasks, foster camaraderie which in turn developed my leadership and organisational skills. Also, I’ve been bestowed the responsibly of playing the lead role of “Theseus “in the much anticipated Annual School Drama. I managed to pull it off spectacularly despite having the barrier of conversing fluently in the local language, Malayalam.
Pallikoodam has also given me the opportunity to conduct various assemblies which has helped develop my public speaking and communication abilities, an integral skill for university level deliberations. Elected to the Student Council as an Assistant Magazine Editor helped me foray into the limitless world of writing. To nourish both my passion and interest, I interned with New Indian Express , a national newspaper where I attended various press conferences and assisted in documenting and editing articles. I have also been enamoured by Russian literature especially the acclaimed works of Fyodor Dostoevsky and Leo Tolstoy, which have equally been enjoyable and insightful Apart from Academia, I have pursued my passion for athletics and football quite ardently. I have represented my school athletic team in various state meets for the last 2 years, where Ive learnt to incorporate my concept of 3P’s; People, Passion and Perseverance. Juggling multiple activities in my school has helped me to organise my time effectively; I am used to working hard, managing to stay self-motivated.
I strongly believe in being part of the larger community, espousing socio-economic causes. My bi-weekly visits to “Navjeevan”, a destitute home for the discarded, for the past 2 years has been highly gratifying. Tutoring English to young girls in the nearby orphanage, “Santhwanam “has helped me engage with them, socially and academically.
To understand today , we have to search the yesterday and that is exactly what International Relations will guarantee me. Despite majoring in Economics and Mathematics in my Senior High School, I look forward to spending the next 3 years adventuring into the myriad nuances of this fascinating subject. At the risk of sounding audacious I believe, that I possess the wherewithal essential to shape India’s future foreign policy