History repeats itself, AISA wins JNU polls

Securing a whopping 2,102 votes, the All India Students' Association (AISA) has won the Jawaharlal Nehru University students’ union elections. The other left wing party combine Students' Federation of India (SFI)-All India Students Federation (AISF) could only manage to get 751 votes.

“It is a clean sweep for us in the central panel posts. Last time also AISA had a similar fate. The only difference then was that SFI had a stronghold in School of Social Sciences (SSS) but this year only one of their candidates got elected from there,” said a member of AISA.

The runner-up candidates in all four categories were SFI students. Abhishek Kumar Yadav defeated Anagha Ingole by 640 votes to become Vice President, Ravi Prakash Singh defeated Durgesh Kumar Tripathi by 919 votes to become the General Secretary, and Mohammad Firoz Ahamed won the Joint Secretary's post by 579 votes against Mohammad Altamash.

An SFI member said that the results were unexpected. “The high margin between our Dasgupta and De was unexpected,” said Roshan Kishore.

Going by Lyngdoh guidelines, the election should have been taken place in September ---within two months after the academic year began. But this time they were held in February-March 2012, for the academic year 2011-2012 as a one time arrangement.

According to students’ representatives of AISA, the rule which refrains re-contesting, had given them little time to prepare.  September 2012 will have another JNU students’ union elections.

“We have around seven months to take up students issues existing in the campus.

Though it is a clean sweep for us in most of the schools, co-ordinating with other party convenors of schools where we did not win, will take time. We will continue our struggle against Lyngdoh Committee recommendations,” said Sucheta De, elected president of of JNUSU, member of AISA.

Amidst celebrations and cheering, with not much time left in the hands of the ruling party, planning and discussions about how to go about things have already started. “Holi is elaborate in the campus, we will waste days there. Exams will also start in some time.

Our agenda is very clear to fight against the discrepancies which are faced by the backward class students in viva voce marks,” said another member of AISA.

 The members also feel that during the recent polls, the best candidates from each party were standing for the elections, since they were held after a long gap. “Not allowing recontesting by the same candidates in the next polls is not good news for any party as their best candidates fought this time's JNUSU polls,” said Sandeep, campaigner for AISA.

The elections took place after a gap of four years as the Supreme Court had put a ban on the JNUSU elections for not abiding by the Lyngdoh Committee's guideline on campus elections.

After a long wait, when the prominent students’ union parties compromised on a few clauses given in the Lyngdoh guidelines, the apex court also allowed relaxation in the guidelines.

The students had to agree to the clause which bars the elected representatives to contest again. The relaxations in December 2011, subsequetly, paved way for holding
elections.

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