Army: Army launches largest-ever school outreach quiz with TOI’s Teach India | India News

NEW DELHI: The Indian Army launched on Wednesday the country’s largest-ever school outreach and quiz contest, which is being executed by Teach India, The Times of India’s nationwide CSR (corporate social responsibility) and skilling initiative, to commemorate 25 years of the Kargil victory in 1999. The mega quiz strives to enrol students from schools in all 762 districts of the country.

Army chief Gen Manoj Pande’s wife Archana Pande, president of the Army Wives Welfare Association, launched the logo ‘Indian Army Quiz 2023: Battle of Minds’, at the Sam Manekshaw Centre here in presence of representatives of 36 schools from across the country. Besides the General’s wife, the “momentous event, which strives towards fostering knowledge and empowerment of youth, was also graced by Lt Gen MV Suchindra Kumar, Vice Chief of the Army Staff, (two) Param Vir Chakra awardees and principals from schools across the nation. This unique initiative will reach out to 1.5 lakh schools in the country with representation from all the districts, engaging more than 4 crore students nationally,” the Indian Army tweeted. Param Vir Chakra Awardees Subedar Major (Honorary Captain) Yogendra Singh Yadav (Retired) and Subedar Major Sanjay Kumar who participated in the event, were given standing ovations.
The name ‘Battle of Minds’ symbolises intellectual vigour with the tagline emphasising victory, bravery and heroism. The crossed swords and Ashoka pillar signify readiness, duty and honour which embody the indomitable spirit and dedication of the Indian Army.

During the event, a mock quiz was organised to give students an idea about the pattern of the pan-India competition. In the mock drill, students of various schools, including from the Army Public Schools, participated and the winners were awarded with iPads.
Lt Gen Channira Bansi Ponnappa, Adjutant General of the Indian Army, said the objective of this campaign is to highlight the role and contribution of the Indian Army towards nation building and commemorate 25 years of the Kargil victory.
Speaking to TOI, Lt Gen Ponnappa said, “We want to organise a pan-India event in order to reach out to maximum students. We want to spread the word about the Kargil war and the sacrifices made. We are targeting around 1.5 lakh schools and we will physically reach out to 50,000 schools. If not all, we are expecting registration of at least 15,000-16,000 schools in this quiz.”
Lt Gen P S Shekhawat, SM, DG DC & W, told TOI, “It’s purely an Indian Army idea. Earlier, we used to organise a quiz among 136 Army schools, where every Army school has adopted 2-3 schools under the Vidyanjali scheme to share with them the basic infrastructure. Now, we want to enrol all schools for this mega quiz, including private, public and government schools.” Officers present in the function praised TOI and its initiative Teach India for being part of the outreach programme.
“The final battle is likely to be organised at IMA, Dehradun, most probably in the second half of December,” Lt Gen Shekhawat said, adding “we want to make this event an annual affair with a different theme every year”.
Vikram D’Souza, the head of ARB Interactive, which is associated with Teach India, said, “Students will have to first enrol for the mega quiz online ( Thereafter, command elimination rounds will be organised at the level of six commands of the Army. And finally, the final battle of minds. The 10-16 age group is being targeted for the quiz competition because these students will be driving the nation by 2047. So, enriching their knowledge about the Army’s contribution in nation-building is the need of the hour.”
How to enrol for the pan-India quiz and its format :
Schools will participate with teams of three students plus one reserve. Teams from co-educational schools will have at least one female student. Participants will be in the age group 10 to 16 years (that is broadly standard six to ten). The contest will be conducted in a hybrid i.e. online and offline mode. Beginning at the regional command level, the competition will then progress to the inter-command and finally culminate at the national level.
The competition will unfold in two stages, ensuring a comprehensive evaluation of the participants. The first stage will commence with an online elimination round, where students will demonstrate their aptitude by tackling a series of intellectually stimulating questions. Successful contenders from the online round will then progress to the second stage, i.e. a regional command-level offline competition culminating in the grand finale. This format guarantees an equitable and demanding assessment of the participants’ knowledge and capabilities, culminating in the discovery of the most deserving winners.
Conduct modality of the quiz competition focuses on five key elements:
Inclusivity: Open to all schools where the English language is primary or secondary medium of instruction;
Equity: Ensuring a female participant from each co-ed school to promote balance;
Fair Play: uphold meritocracy, aided by accessible tutorials;
Free Registration
Attractive Prizes: Notably, rewards for schools, students, and accompanying teachers, with prizes exceeding Rs 4 crore, including buses for the top 12 schools and over 360 laptops for students and teachers are on offer.
The quiz goes beyond the concept of just testing the general awareness of students. It is a forum which provides a vibrant platform to the youth at the grassroots level to test their knowledge base of culture, science, technology and innovation.

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