In recent developments, the National Students’ Union of India (NSUI), the student wing of the Congress,sought to approach the High Court with allegations that the Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU) polls that were held last week were rigged.
The Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), the student wing of the BJP, won a sweeping victory in the DUSU elections, securing 3 seats, while the NSUI secured 1 seat- that of Joint Secretary.
NSUI goes on a hunger strike
Protesting against rigging of the election results and faulty EVMs, the NSUI went on an indefinite hunger strike at Arts Faculty. According to NSUI’s National President, Amrita Dhawan, the NSUI had asked for cameras to be installed during the counting of votes so as to ensure transparency in the process. The NSUI’s protest was directed against this lack of transparency. Further, the organisation claims that in some colleges, certain buttons on the EVM could not be pressed. The hunger strike was held with the basic demand for a recounting of votes, along with a release of machine-wise data and recordings of the counting process.
The strike was called off when the Chairman of the Grievance Redressal Committee assured the protesters that the committee would meet members of the organisation and come to a decision.
Grievance Redressal Committee meets NSUI delegation
For the first time in the history of Delhi University elections, the Grievance Redressal Committee met with an NSUI delegation comprising all NSUI candidates who contested the elections, along with National President Amrita Dhawan, Member of Parliament Oscar Fernandes, and Secretary of AICC K.C. Mittal.
The NSUI submitted a memorandum of demands including recounting of votes, access to recordings of the counting process and re-election in colleges where there were discrepancies in the EVMs. Until these demands are met, they sought that no office bearer should be allowed to take charge.
Conceding to the demands, the Grievance Redressal Committee furnished recordings of the counting process, besides the machine-wise votes secured by each candidate.
NSUI dissatisfied with recordings, will approach the High Court
According to NSUI’s press release, the organisation is dissatisfied with the recordings and data made available to them by the Grievance Redressal Committee. They allege that the camera was focussed on just 1-2 machines and did not show all 12 tables where votes from 140 machines were being counted. They also claim that there were discrepancies in the machine-wise data provided to them- some papers showed the wrong date of counting, while some papers were signed by only one official when the requisite number is two.
Angellica Aribam, National General Secretary of the NSUI says, “From the data that has been considered, the NSUI has reached the conclusion that there is a lack of transparency in the DUSU polls and counting of votes. The organisation will now approach the High Court as the recordings made available by the Grievance Redressal Committee are not satisfactory, though the Committee has seen merit in our case.”
Image credits: NSUI media cell