The Delhi University Election Committee will take steps to check the use of muscle and money power in the Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU) polls from next year. The Committee will start closely scrutinising the alleged violations of the Lyngdoh Committee regulations in the students’ union elections that concluded on Friday. A top university source confirmed that the vice chancellor might call a meeting next week to discuss the criticism that the university elections have faced for its over-use of money and muscle power.

Requesting anonymity, a senior Delhi University official said, “We have been following the developments very closely and plan to analyse and come up with effective suggestions to ensure that this year’s violations in the university’s students’ union elections are not repeated next year.”

Election campaigning in Delhi University was continuously surrounded by criticism over violation of Lyngdoh Committee regulations, but the competing parties largely stayed unaffected. Satish Upadhyay, BJP’s Delhi state president, said, “This is what everybody says, but the truth is that the Congress started this culture long back that has become a norm now. I agree that such practices should not be encouraged. The authorities concerned should take note of the situation.”

Anupam Kumar Yadav, President, Chatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS), the students’ wing of Aam Admi Party (AAP), criticising the university’s attitude towards violators, said, “I don’t even know why we have Lyngdoh’s recommendations if the university does not have any intention of controlling the use of money and muscle in election campaigning on campus. Arranging trips to amusement parks, distributing liquor, movie tickets, organising parties in high-end clubs, this is how voters are lured in DU. I don’t have high hopes that the university will come down on such elements with an iron fist.” Prof. D.S. Rawat, the Chief Election Officer of DUSU, had issued notices to North, East and South Municipal Corporations, requesting them to take strict action against students defacing public property in the name of election campaigning. The notice said, “Every year, we see tonnes of paper lying on the roads, defacing public property. As per the Defacement of Property Act, no one is allowed to deface public property. In the light of a Delhi High Court order and NGT order, it is requested to take strict action against violators of the above mentioned orders.”

Meanwhile, the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) won Delhi University Students’ Union elections, securing three out of the four central panel positions. Amit Tanwar from ABVP was elected the new President of DUSU, defeating Nikhil Yadav from NSUI and Kawalpreet Kaur from AISA. While Priyanka Chabri (ABVP) was elected the Vice President, Ankit Sangwan (ABVP) was elected for the post of Secretary. NSUI could secure only the Joint Secretary’s post in DUSU central panel won by Mohit Sangwan.

Prof. Yogesh Tyagi, Delhi University Vice-Chancellor, congratulating the winners of the DUSU elections, told The Sunday Guardian, “I extend all my wishes to the newly elected DUSU panel and to all those who participated in our cherished democratic process.” On ABVP’s consecutive third win in DU polls, Upadhyay said, “ABVP’s win denotes the victory of nationalists. NSUI has lost its connect with the youth because of their politics of double-standards. The anti-nationals are bound to lose. We are confident about our performance in JNU. The students there, too, are no longer able to relate to the Left parties.” 

NSUI national president Amrita Dhawan congratulated Mohit Sangwan who was elected Joint Secretary. In a tweet, Dhawan said: “Our candidates fought a tough fight. This is the beginning of the end of ABVP in DU as evident from the massive increase in the vote share of the NSUI.”

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