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DU polls: AAP student wing to counter money, muscle, rain-dance parties

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Source: Google images
Source: Google images

New Delhi: Unable to match the “money and muscle power” of the two big national parties, the students wing of the Aam Aam Aadmi Party, that rules Delhi, has decided to take on the political heavyweights in the in the high-profile Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU) elections through more mass contact and social media outreach.

Thus far, the NSUI and the ABVP, the students wings of the Congress and the ABVP, used to dominate the students polls in Delhi. But this time, AAP’s students wing, Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS), is heavily relying a “person-to-person” campaign – a tried and tested strategy that brought the party to power in Delhi this year.

The state president of the CYSS, Anupam Yadav, said that the group already had over 750 volunteers who were contacting new students joining DU colleges on a personal basis.

“Our aim is to make DUSU polls free from money and muscle power. We will do issue-based politics for student welfare. We have prepared an application form for those new members who would like to contest in the DUSU polls in future. The poll aspirants will be asked to provide personal details like their political and criminal background, if any, and their social networking IDs (Twitter, Facebook), apart from basic details,” Yadav told IANS.

The party will go through all the applications to select the most deserving candidates in a free and transparent manner, Yadav added.

Yadav said that there are 77 colleges affiliated to Delhi University out of which 44 colleges participated in the DUSU polls. This year, 60,000 new students were admitted to various DU courses, of which 54,000 joined under-graduate courses.

Unlike the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and the National Students’ Union of India (NSUI), the AAP’s student wing does not have the money and muscle power that the older groups wield. But Yadav insisted that money and muscles were not required.

“Everyone knows that lakhs of rupees are spent during students’ union election in Delhi University every year. But instead of spending large sums of money, we will abide by the Lyngdoh Committee recommendations which say that every candidate can spend up to Rs 5,000 in student union polls,” Yadav said.

“To reduce expenses, we will opt for hand-made posters and activity-based campaigning like street plays and classroom contact. With over 750 volunteers, we will reach out to every class in all the colleges participating in the polls,” he added.

DUSU elections are notorious for the money and political clout that candidates use liberally to tilt the results in their favour. Those involved with students’ politics say that the spending starts much before the actual polls, in fact, it starts right from the first month of the new academic session when freshers, as new scholars are called, start their university.

“Students are shown the good life with DJs and rain-dance parties, free liquor and even movie tickets. These are all methods to make students fresh from school acquainted with the candidates,” said a member of a students’ group who has been involved with DUSU politics for over a decade.

“DUSU elections are considered the nursery of national politics and major political parties like the Congress and BJP consider the poll results a sample survey of sorts for the mood in the country as DU colleges get students from all over the country. In fact, Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit would personally oversee poll arrangements for NSUI and so would the national leadership of BJP for the ABVP,” said the student leader on the condition of anonymity.

Some Left-affiliated groups, however, have been already operating on a shoe-string budget. They have also managed to trump their richer counterparts on occasion.

Delhi state secretary of the All India Students’ Association (AISA) Om Prasad said that they had limited financial resources so they believe in contacting students personally to spread their message in the polls.

“Instead of spending money on parties and advertisement to attract students, we physically meet them and tell them about our agenda in the elections that are related to students’ issues on the campus,” Prasad told IANS. “We conduct public meetings, use handmade pamphlets and posters for campaigning.”

Kanhaiya, a member of the All India Students Federation (AISF) state council, said class-to-class based core campaigning would be their tool to win the polls.

“We will reach out to every student in their classrooms for our campaign to save money. Credit-Based Choice System (CBCS) will be our main agenda in this election,” he told IANS.

Kanhaiya added that AISF would contest the DUSU polls in alliance with the Students Federation of India (SFI) and the All India Democratic Students Organisation (AIDSO).

To woo new students at Delhi University, AAP leaders Dilip Pandey, Alka Lamba and Raghu Ram had earlier visited several colleges when the new session began last month.

NSUI president Roji M. John said that they would also opt for issue-based politics in the election. He, however, said that it was not possible to contest polls within the Rs-5,000 cap recommended by the Lyngdoh Committee.

(IANS)

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  • Emperor Babur

    Napunsak Narendra has erectile dysfunction, so he ran away from Jasodaben on suhaag raat 46 years ago. But to get elected, he asked BJP chumachas to glorify him as Lord Ram and Gautam Buddha. Feku could not bang where needed but he is screwing Bharat Mata from behind every day like a rabid dog with maun vrat, nautanki dresses, lying, incompetency, corruption, nation looting ministers and hiding his crimes using the government machinery. Just watch…. this Nalayak Narendra will take away Bharata Mata’s saari faster than Dushaasan took Draupadi’s or Congress has been doing to India for 68 years.

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  • Emperor Babur

    Napunsak Narendra has erectile dysfunction, so he ran away from Jasodaben on suhaag raat 46 years ago. But to get elected, he asked BJP chumachas to glorify him as Lord Ram and Gautam Buddha. Feku could not bang where needed but he is screwing Bharat Mata from behind every day like a rabid dog with maun vrat, nautanki dresses, lying, incompetency, corruption, nation looting ministers and hiding his crimes using the government machinery. Just watch…. this Nalayak Narendra will take away Bharata Mata’s saari faster than Dushaasan took Draupadi’s or Congress has been doing to India for 68 years.

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Saw AAP MLAs Assaulting Chief Secretary, CM’s Advisor Tells Police

The AAP defended by stating that Jain had initially told police that he did not witness any assault and police has threatened Jain to change his statement

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The AAP had denied the charges of assault and said that the Chief Secretary was making allegations at the behest of the BJP. Wikimedia Commons

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s adviser V. K. Jain on Thursday told police that he saw AAP MLAs Amanatullah Khan and Prakash Jarwal “physically assaulting” Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash, according to Jain’s statement recorded by the Delhi Police.

The AAP defended by stating that Jain had initially told police that he did not witness any assault and police has threatened Jain to change his statement.

On Tuesday, the Chief Secretary had alleged that he was beaten up by the two AAP MLAs in the presence of Kejriwal at the Chief Minister’s residence on Monday night, where he had been called for an emergency meeting.

ALSO READ: The assault on Chief Secretary exposes the double standards of AAP government

Police later arrested Khan and Jarwal and they were sent to judicial custody till Thursday.

According to the Chief Secretary, the Chief Minister’s adviser had called him over the phone and asked him to come to the Chief Minister’s residence for the meeting and Jain was also present there.

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According to the statement, Jain also saw that the Chief Secretary’s spectacles had fallen to the ground and the Chief Secretary picked them up and left the room. Wikimedia Commons

On Thursday, the Delhi Police submitted Jain’s statement at a city court, which said that Jain had gone to the washroom during the meeting and as he came out he saw the two AAP MLAs “physically assaulting” the Chief Secretary.

The statement was recorded under Section 161 of the CrPC, which means that it was recorded in front of the police and not a magistrate.

Sources told IANS that Jain later recorded his statement in front of a magistrate under section 164 of the CrPC.

“The statement under section 164 was later recorded with the magistrate in front a camera, without the presence of police. In that statement also he (Jain) has said that he saw the two MLAs physically assaulting the Chief Secretary,” a police officer privy to the case told IANS.

The officer said that the statement under section 164 has also been submitted to the court.

Jain was first questioned on Wednesday morning and then again on Thursday and his statement was recorded on Thursday.

The change in Jain’s statement that the AAP was referring to was from a “question and answer” with Jain recorded by police after questioning him on Wednesday.

According to a copy of Wednesday’s “question and answer” recorded by police, when asked whether Jain saw the Chief Secretary being manhandled, he replied that he had gone to the washroom in between the meeting and he could not say what happened during that time.

“By putting pressure on him (Jain) throughout the day (Thursday) and by threatening him, police has forced him to change his statement,” AAP MP Sanjay Singh told the media here on Thursday.

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Singh said that the whole issue was a conspiracy to “bring down the Delhi government” and to “defame the AAP”. Wikimedia Commons

 

“How is it that the same Jain who emphatically said yesterday that he witnessed no assault during the entire time that he was present there has now claimed otherwise?” he asked.

Singh said that AAP MLAs were being arrested over an alleged assault of which there was no proof.

“But on the other hand, despite there being video footage of officials assaulting Delhi Cabinet Minister Imran Hussain, there is no action taken against the guilty by the Delhi Police,” the AAP MP said.

The court on Thursday sent the two AAP MLAs, arrested on charges of assaulting the Chief Secretary, to judicial custody for 14 days.

ALSO READ: Delhi Chief Secretary row: AAP MLA arrested

Orders on the bail pleas of the two AAP MLAs and also on their police custody will be pronounced on Friday.

Meanwhile, scores of Delhi government employees across the city observed a five-minute silence outside their respective offices as a protest against the alleged assault on the Chief Secretary.

The IAS Association said that officers would continue the protest every day, till steps are taken to “ensure safety and dignity” of government staff in the city.

The AAP also hit out at Lt Governor Anil Baijal by stating that he was “working as a BJP agent” and demanded action against those involved in “manhandling and beating up” Hussain and his aide at the Delhi Secretariat on Tuesday. (IANS)