The Center for Civil Society in Delhi ( were our partners for distributing the 1st edition of the CD in 2006 and the 2nd Edition in 1010/11

“We are an ideas organisation, a think tank that develops ideas to better the world. We want to usher in an intellectual revolution that encourages people to look beyond the obvious, think beyond good intentions, and act beyond activism.

We believe in the individuality and dignity of all persons, and their right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness. We trust their judgement when they cast their vote in a ballot box and when they spend their money in a marketplace. We are driven by the dream of a free society, where political, social, and economic freedom reigns. We are soldiers for a Second Freedom Movement.”

CCS ran an energetic campaign on several fronts to explain and promote the concepts about free societies in the texts on the 2nd Edition of the CD “Ideas for a Free Society”

  • They ran a major Essay Competition 
  “How Free Are You?”
  • They ran  a seminar  for those who won or were placed.
  • They placed ads in student magazines/websites, liberal magazines, political party newsletters about the CD, or sponsored prizes in school/college debates when the issue is related to our liberal theme
  • They packaged and distributed 2000 copies to students, elected representatives, media, academics and libraries .

They essay competition was named after a famous Indian free market economist. BR Shenoy.

B R Shenoy Memorial Essay Competition 2011

Centre for Civil Society (CCS), New Delhi

in partnership with

International Policy Network, London



B R Shenoy Memorial Essay Competition 2011

How Free Are You?

Knowledge & Publicity Partners:

Bangalore Management Academy (BMA), Bangalore

Centre for Media and Cultural Studies, Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Mumbai

Humanities Department, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Guwahati

The Statesman School of Print Journalism, Kolkata

Eostre (Delhi School of Economics Journal), New Delhi

India Habitat Centre, New Delhi

Liberal Youth Forum (LYF)

Media Partners: TOI, HT


November 8, 2010 – Launch of the Essay Competition
January 10, 2011 – Deadline for submissions
January 26, 2011 – Finalists of the essay announced
February 13, 2011- Award Ceremony during the Mont Pelerin Society Asia Regional Meeting in The Leela Kempinski, Gurgaon. (Only 20 finalists will be invited)

Topic: How Free Are You?

Freedom is not worth having if it does not connote freedom to err. It passes my comprehension how human beings, be they ever so experienced and able, can delight in depriving other human beings of that precious right. — Mohandas K Gandhi

Study some of the texts on the CD  “Ideas for a Free Society” and use them to help you develop your understanding of freedom which has three basic dimensions: personal (freedom to make personal life choices), political (freedom to elect representatives and define their powers and supervise their work), and economic (freedom to chose a vocation and engage in trade and exchange).

We encourage you to share your experiences, stories, and ideas of how you as an individual view freedom from a personal, political and economic perspective. What customs, traditions, rules, regulations, laws restrict or undermine these freedoms? How can one remove the restrictions and barriers to freedom to become freer in India?


a) First prize: 40,000 INR
b) Second prize: 25,000 INR
c) Third prize: 15,000 INR

d) 6 Honorable mentions: 5,000 INR for each mention

e) Top 20 essays will receive the book ‘The Beautiful Tree’ by James Tooley.

f) Selected winners will be invited for the residential youth seminars and International conferences to interact with some renowned celebrities and intellectuals.

Who can participate?

B R Shenoy Memorial Essay Competition is open to all young people, students and non-students alike, between the ages of 18 and 25, from India.

If you are at least 18 and not older than 25 on January 10, 2011, you are eligible to participate.

Length and format

  • All essays must be submitted by individuals, group work is not allowed.
  • One participant may only submit one work per category.
  • All submissions must be emailed to
  • ·       Submissions can be made in English
  • Your essay may not be longer than 2500 words.
  • Essays are accepted in the following formats: .doc or .pdf.
  • You are also required to provide a summary of no more than 250 words. The summary will be used by the jury to make a pre-selection.



• Submissions will be accepted until January 10, 2011.

• Each participant may submit only one entry

• The essay competition is open for all young people based in India, students and non-students alike.  Participants must be between the ages 18-25 on January 10, 2011.  Students enrolled in Ph.D. courses are, however, not eligible to participate.
• Essays must not be longer than 2,500 words.

• Submissions can only be made online, in English.

• Each participant must fill in a submission form on the Essay Competition website.

• Each essay must be accompanied by a summary (max. 250 words). The summary will be used by the jury to make a pre-selection.

• All submissions will be blind reviewed. References to specific individuals, firms, or schools, which might reveal the author’s identity, are discouraged. It is not allowed to indicate your name anywhere on your work.

• Quotes and references must be clearly marked throughout the essay and properly cited.

• All submissions must be original. No previously published material will be accepted. Any form of plagiarism will result in automatic disqualification.

• Essays are accepted in the .doc or .pdf format.

• The Centre for Civil Society reserves the right to publish and/or to make available to the public the winning submissions. The Centre for Civil Society reserves the right to modify the format and content of the submissions for publication purposes-print and online.

• The decision of the Jury is final and is not subject to an appeal.
• Staff (full time and part time) of Centre for Civil Society and International Policy Network, London of the Freedom Essay Competition 2011 are not eligible to participate.

Evaluation Committee:

The Essay Competition is organized by the Centre for Civil Society in partnership with the International Policy Network.

The steering committee is composed of individuals from the organisers & partners. The role of the Committee is to ensure a fair and transparent process of selecting the winners.

48 Students and Young Professionals attended the CCS ‘ ìpolicy Seminar for Young Leaders’, 22-24 July Delhi. The Seminar also brought 24 participants from the  Essay Competition ‘How Free Are You?’.

For photographs of the event click here.

The top 9 winning essays were published on the CCS  website.


Rank Winner’s Name Prize Amount Essay Link

Congratulations to all winners and thanks to all participants

1st Neeraj Kumar Singh INR 40,000 Click here
2nd Alex M Thomas INR 25,000 Click here
3rd Neil Borate INR 15,000 Click here
Special Mention(in alphabetical order) Basil James INR 5,000 Click here
Priyanka Pani INR 5,000 Click here
Shiba Desor INR 5,000 Click here
Shruti Lakhtakia INR 5,000 Click here
Soumitra Subinaya INR 5,000 Click here
Vibha Arya INR 5,000 Click here


Posted in Countries, India.

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