Journalist Babita Gautam was allegedly harassed by (unconfirmed) CYSS members at a programme ‘Rozgar Sansad’, organised at Jantar Mantar, Delhi on 19th December 2021. Read more to find out what ensued on that day and what the two involved sides have to say about it.

On 19th December 2021, Sunday, a programme by the name of ‘Rozgar Sansad’ was organized at the Jantar Mantar in Delhi to deliberate upon a recent draft of a ‘National Employment Policy’ prepared by a think tank to press for an increase in employment opportunities. The programme saw the presence of more than thirty student organisations, RWAs and teachers’ bodies and was addressed by Gopal Rai, a minister in the Delhi cabinet. 

Members from the youth division of the Aam Aadmi Party, that is the Chatr-Yuva Sangarsh Samiti (CYSS), were also present on the day. During this programme, friction ensued between some CYSS members and a journalist from The Mooknayak (a media platform dedicated to marginalized, unprivileged, and Bahujan society), Babita Gautam. 


Recounting the incidents from that day, Babita Gautam talked about how when questioned about the Kejriwal government opening up more liquor shops in Delhi and the effect it might have on enticing the unemployed youth, a person from the crowd justified it by saying that it is better that the youth go to liquor shops rather than moving towards self-harm. 

I asked that do you want more liquor shops to be opened up? So, some people from the crowd said yes. So, then my question was that do you not want employment but rather want liquor shops? So, some people who were standing there again said yes.” she told DU Beat.

A video uploaded on the official twitter handle of The Mooknayak showed this interaction which also included Anusha Singh, the Delhi state secretary at CYSS. 

This video although showing only a part of what happened on that day cannot be completely and blindly referred considering that the many interruptions from the crowd, missing or inaudible audio snippets and hooting from behind leave a lot to be speculated. Even though the questions from Babita Gautam can be clearly heard in the video, the very controversial crowd responses towards the end are undecipherable at best, thereby infringing upon the only evidence that might have backed this account.


Another video uploaded on the same official Twitter account of The Mooknayak shows the misbehaviour that was directed towards Babita Gautam by an alleged CYSS member. 

Narrating this incident, Babita Gautam told DU Beat, 

…the crowd started pulling at my shawl, trying to pull my mic towards them, started disrespecting me and shouting things like “Godi media”. At the same time, a boy came out from the crowd who first used abusive language and the way that he was coming felt like he would have killed me if the purple shirt person (Ritesh Shrivastava) had not been present there.”


This allegation about the perpetrator being a CYSS member has been strongly denied by the president of the CYSS, Delhi state, Adv. Chandra Mani Dev. On the other hand, he went on to highlight how one of their members (shown wearing an ID card), Ritesh Shrivastava, Delhi state secretary, was constantly trying to stop that person and diffuse the situation. He denied any involvement of CYSS regarding this incident and was rather convinced that this might have been the act of anti-social elements who were trying to disrupt the protest and ruin its purpose.

…. we couldn’t recognise that person in CYSS yet and he wasn’t even wearing an ID card. So, he was not a member of CYSS.” said Rishi Kumar Gupta, general secretary of CYSS, Delhi state.

Even though the argument presented here by CYSS is not the most credible one, considering that there is no way to cross-check their statement in retrospect, it does present a sliver of doubt in their favour. Moreover, here it becomes important to emphasise and understand that in any protest it is extremely difficult to identify and remove the anti-social elements from the protesting group or vice-versa as obviously there is no demarcating feature or mark that they might be wearing to distinguish themselves from the crowd.

On the contrary, this opinion is not one that is shared by Babita Gautam as she describes how everyone in that crowd seemed to be interacting with each other. She does corroborate the effort made by Ritesh Shrivastava but also points out that the woman candidate (Anusha Singh) was laughing and not even trying to stop them. Babita Gautam continued, 

…I am not at all satisfied with this testimony of theirs. ….. In my opinion, if they were anti-social elements then why were you laughing and was the entire crowd anti-social elements? (And if they were) then why did CYSS not separate themselves from that crowd?”


On another tangent, the term ‘Godi media’ (biased reporting), has been repeatedly coming up as an issue of contention in this incident, seen as a term used to question the sanctity of journalism and the credibility of a journalist. As a journalist, it becomes understandable that an individual might be offended by the use of such a term to address them or their reporting. This term has ended up becoming the nuclear bomb of journalism: a territory that needs to be tread on lightly and one that has resonating consequences. 

The use of ‘Godi media’ made it seem like there was an attempt to deflect the questions being directed towards CYSS by journalist Babita Gautam who feels that nowadays the answerer has started using the crowd as a crutch to avoid answering difficult questions and rather targeting the questioning journalist itself.

Although CYSS has again denied any involvement in the use of any such term as the term was allegedly not even spoken by a CYSS member, it is impossible to really know if they were pursuing an attempt to deflect or not and whether there was any connection between the question asked and reaction that unfolded.

Putting forward their point of view on this, the CYSS president said,

…. this issue was also highlighted extensively on that day even though there was no such relation to the question asked. The anti-social elements that were present tried to create conflict based upon this.”

Rishi Kumar Gupta continued, 

No one was offended by any of the questions.  Our members were giving their point of view and also listening to Babita Gautam’s questions patiently…. which can be seen in the video.”


Later on the same day, CYSS Delhi published a tweet from their official account as an attempt to clear out the alleged confusion and misidentification of the person as a CYSS member. They ended up getting a response from the official Twitter handle of The Mooknayak wherein the account retweeted the tweet by CYSS Delhi. By virtue of the normative behaviour followed on social media platforms including Twitter, it seemed as if the situation had been neutralized and a resolution was at hand, but it seems as if this feeling ended up being only one-sided while the dispute was still in full swing from the other end.


Upon being asked a question regarding this tweeting-retweeting game, Babita Gautam clarified on her end,

The Mooknayak has retweeted their tweet only so that people may get to know what testimony has been given by CYSS in context of this incident. Currently, the Mooknayak is looking into this matter. There has been no resolution of the matter from my side because the explanation given by them is very childish and it seems like they are just shedding responsibility from the matter.”


Zeroing in on the question that started it all, what really is the reason behind the opening up of more liquor shops in Delhi? Is it an attempt to lead the youth astray? Or maybe even an attempt to secure a vote bank, that too one of the biggest? Upon being asked that same question that was asked by Babita Gautam on the day of the incident, the president of CYSS explained that the imposition of a ban does not necessarily ensure that alcohol would not be found in the region anymore. Giving the examples of states like Bihar and Gujarat, he continued on how there is no lack of alcohol in these states with smuggling being a major contributing factor. Recently, empty liquor bottles were also found at the Bihar assembly premises which started off a controversy of its own, blaming the government of being hypocritical. Giving the answer to this question, he said that first of all, he does not think that liquor shops are being opened in high numbers in Delhi but rather that it is being unnecessarily highlighted considering how close the MCD elections are. In addition, the only logic behind new liquor shops coming up in the city is to stop the smuggling and illegal sale of alcohol into the state.

Many times, you see that people die because of consuming poisonous alcohol, in Gujarat and in other places too. So, the point is that if inevitably alcohol is being sold, at least poisonous alcohol should not be sold or smuggling of alcohol should not be done,” he said.

This statement can be easily corroborated with the new liquor policy being implemented in Delhi, under which liquor shops are being equitably distributed with only private shops being run in the city from now onwards. According to reports, this has been done to reduce corruption, unauthorized vendors as well as bootlegging in the city, as was highlighted by the CYSS president.

Ultimately, the point here is that the solution to a problem is not always shutting the institution or the system down but rather deliberating and exercising active control over the said system itself. 


When DU Beat presented this answer to Babita Gautam, she was asked about her opinion on this response to her question by CYSS to which she said,

… if they can give this answer now, they could have done so then as well. Then why did those people come down to being rude and disrespecting me, and why did they get angry (offended) on my question related to alcohol?”

In the end, it is clear that the alleged harassment directed towards Babita Gautam was an absolutely wrong and condemnable incident, from the point of view of journalistic freedom as well as normal human behaviour and conduct. What still remains unclear is that if the CYSS was really involved or not in this incident against Babita Gautam. The arguments from both sides have a mix of both believable and flaccid elements, but they clearly lack a certain level of credibility to necessarily implicate any one of them, making it extremely difficult to see this interaction in anything but a grey light. Clarity regarding the truth behind this incident can only be reached through proper effort and investigation as rightly pointed out by Adv. Chandra Mani Dev when he told DU Beat,

…. I believe that whoever is the wrongdoer in this scenario should definitely be prosecuted and Delhi police should take action and investigate.”


Read also https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/empty-liquor-bottles-found-on-bihar-assembly-premises/article37781028.ece

Feature Image Credits: Twitter (@The_Mooknayak)


Manasvi Kadian

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Months ahead of assembly polls in the National Capital, young students associated with various student organisations of Delhi University South Campus colleges joined Aam Aadmi Party (AAP)’s Student wing Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS) on Saturday, 28 September. 

Youth and politics go hand in hand at the University. Students from South Campus colleges including Atma Ram Sanatan Dharma and Motilal Nehru College have joined CYSS. They did so in the presence AAP Delhi Convenor and Cabinet Minister, Gopal Rai and Minister of Parliament, Sanjay Singh at the party headquarters.

The students were whole heartedly welcomed in the party by being offered caps, symbolising the party’s signature look. The students also witnessed the presence of the Chief Minister of Delhi, Arwind Kejriwal.

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal addressed several student leaders, who won elections to various posts in DU Colleges as independent candidates, during their induction into the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Saturday.

The National Convener was told by student leaders that money and nepotism were dominating student politics at the university. Mr. Kejriwal in response to that, said “AAP is the only party where anyone can contest and win elections.”

On being asked about the level of politics in the University and its similarity to the national one, “Politics in the country will change only when there is politics without means. If politicians contest elections with someone’s money, then their accountability will also be limited to them. We changed this type of politics in Delhi. I still have nothing, that is why I am able to think of, and for, the public,” Mr. Kejriwal further added.

Happy Club, a Students’ Union, which focuses exclusively on student centric problems while contesting elections was rumoured to be part of CYSS in the past few months.

Cabinet Minister Gopal Rai said “All these students will lead the pathway of the ideology of AAPs student organisation to their colleges and work towards strengthening the roots of the organisation in their respective colleges.”

“An organisation of students, Happy Club, which has been fighting for the students’ body elections for the past many years in the Delhi University South Campus have joined the party”, added Mr Rai.

All the students and people attached to the Happy Club have joined AAP under the leadership of the director of the club Vinay Udara.

Shivani Singh, State office Bearer, Media Head, CYSS told DU Beat, “We have welcomed all students with open hearts. We believe as AAP works education policies, it has motivated these students to join the party. This also gives us inspiration, in future to raise our movement against privatisation and saffronisation of education, which currently AAP is doing.”

The Chief Minister urged the student leaders to think about the rights and the colleges they represent. He also said that his doors were open if they needed anything including, funds for the development of their respective institutions.

Feature image credits: Stephen Matthew for DU Beat

Chhavi Bahmba 

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The student body of Aam Aadmi Party, Chatra Yuva Sangharsh Samithi ( CYSS) has been on an indefinite hunger strike.


The hunger strike that started on the 27th of this month, outside the Arts Faculty has been continuing for the last 48 hours. It is being organised with respect to demanding the fulfilment of various needs put up by the Student wing.

The demands being

1. Hostels for all students

2.Equal fees for all colleges in the university

3.Re-examination for students in the same year if failed.

4.A 24-hour library facility

5.Elections through ballot paper.

DU Beat was able to speak to Mr Chandramani Dev who is the state committee Vice President of CYSS. He had this to say, ” The re-examination of students who are not able to clear their examinations used to happen the same year earlier. This system was later changed. It puts a lot of pressure on the students. Thus it’s important that this system is brought back so that the students do not have to waste a year”.

He also started the reasons for demanding ballot based vote ” Last year I had contested to be the joint secretary of DUSU, I was winning till the sixth round after which there was a five-hour-long electricity cut. When the results were announced I had lost. The voting machines were tampered with and that clearly cancels out the spirit of DU elections. Thus we have been demanding to bring back ballot system.”

Politicians like Mr Harsh Bansal also came to Arts Faculty to meet the students.

CYSS had decided to not participate in the elections for DUSU this year stating that they will only participate if the ballot term is brought back.



Stephen Mathew

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The party members of Chathra Yuva Sangharsh Samithi (CYSS) protested in front of the Arts Faculty today. They demanded a reduction of fees and, hostel facilities for the he OBC and EWS category students.

CYSS, the student wing of Aam Aadmi Party, held a protest in the Arts Faculty. The protest began at 11:30 in the morning continued till three in the afternoon. The protest saw many party workers with banners and posters, shouting various kinds of slogans. 

The march was being led by, Delhi-region State President, Mr. Sumit Yadav. The protest was organised against the fee hike in various colleges and the lack of admissions of students of OBC students postgraduate hostels. It aldo focused on the provision of admissions to OBC and EWS category students in law and other postgraduate courses.

The University had recently increased the fee in various colleges like Mata Sundari. The lack of reservations has been an issue in the University of Delhi (DU) hostels where students are given seats on rank and vacancy basis making it impossible for students of reserved categories to secure admissions in hostels.

However, other than these issues, the issue of a young Muslim girl wanting to seek admission was also raised. 

Afshan, a postgraduate aspirant, wanted to seek admission in DU after completing her graduation from Zakhir Hussain College. She believes that she was prohibited from giving her entrance because of her name which indicated she was a Muslim. 

In addressing the gathering and DU Beat, Afshan said in her speech, translated from Hindi here- “I graduated a year back in 2018 from the University, people here say things like ‘Beti Padhao, Beti Bachao’ yet I have been struggling for two years now for getting my admission done. There was a girl in Unnao who was silenced for asking justice and that’s what they are doing to me. I wanted justice for my education and my leg shivers stating what they’ve done to me. I’ve been blackmailed and told they will ruin my documents as well. I filed a complaint, yet there is no investigation. They say they’ll abduct me. I feel shivers down my spine.” 

She later tried to get in the conference hall of the University, yet she was stopped. There were policewomen ready to tackle her. After a long quarrel, she was finally admitted in the conference hall.  

Later, DU Beat interviewed Mr. Sumit Yadav, Delhi-region State President. He stated, “DU is considered one of the best institutions in the country. All the students across the country even people from rural places of Delhi like Najafgarh choose DU because they get a great education at lower price. Now due to privatisation, they’ve increased the prizes. Our party has always been against privatisation and we’ve been raising our voices for the same.”

The various slogans shouted out were “Chhatro par ab reham, karo fees hamari kam karo ( Have some mercy on the students, reduce fees now)” and “Rehne ko awas chahiye humko Chathrawas chahiye (We need shelter to stay, we need students to have homes)”. They also had slogans critiquing the Vice Chancellor’s inability to provide adequate hostel facilities.

The Party members marched towards gate number four but were stopped by the guards and were not permitted to cross. The situation turned hostile when members tried to climb the gates and cross it over. The guards were forced to push them back. 

“We are protesting here against the fee hike in various colleges which has been implemented this year, that is from ten thousand to twenty-five thousand rupees. It deters students from poor backgrounds from courses diversity courses  as they cannot afford such high fees. We are also protesting again courses as of hostel facilities because of which students are exploited by PG owners to pay very high fees,” said Mr. Hariom Prabhakar who is the General Secretary of CYSS, while in conversation with DU Beat.

Feature Image Credits: Stephen Mathew for DU Beat

Stephen Mathew

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Chhavi Bahmba 

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In a session today, AISA-CYSS and NSUI presented their election manifestoes in Miranda House. The Miranda House Student’s Union elections were also held.

Half an hour after noon today, the Miranda House auditorium was abuzz with students who had come to hear the candidates for various student’s unions making their election speeches. After the Miranda House Student’s Union elections (MHSU) candidates made their election speeches, representatives from AISA-CYSS and NSUI came forward for their campaigns.

Abhigyan, the AISA-CYSS Presidential candidate said in his campaign speech, “There is a narrative which has happened that university-level politics is very self-centred and is used as a stepping stone for advancing a person’s career, we are trying to change this narrative. Why shouldn’t there be a narrative where we can talk about politics? We are trying to build a Union which is not going to dictate the students.” Abhigyan raised several issues like financial autonomy, the use of muscle power and the masculinity that has crept up in politics. He also talked about how AISA had helped in building a girls’ hostel in Hindu College, fought for metro bus passes as well as campaigned against financial autonomy.

Abhigyan was then questioned extensively by the students who asked him on AISA’s stand on gender discrimination committees, why AISA was fielding a male Presidential candidate and so on.

After that, NSUI’s student candidate for the Vice-Presidential post, Leena tried to present her manifesto. However, some of the students of Miranda House opposed her before she could say anything, demanding that she leave the podium and that she was not “fit to be contesting elections.” Amid massive booing, Leena talked about the NSUI’s stance for women empowerment, to make University of Delhi (DU) an Institute of Eminence which would bring in public funds, to launch a thali for students worth 10 rupees, etc. Leena, who is a graduate of Miranda House, claimed that she used to “stand outside the gate of Miranda House regularly and campaign.” However, many students shouted that they hadn’t seen her outside the gate. She was also called out on her claim of not distributing any pamphlets in her name, what she would do on her part to change the politics of the University, and the fact that her name was changed from Leena to “A.A. Leena” in an alleged claim for getting the first ballot. Although Ms Leena tried to defend her position and that of her student union, the students booed her off the stage.

Ambica, a Miranda House student said, “The girl from NSUI didn’t have answers for anything. She just repeated a few things that she had been told to say. But it wasn’t surprising because once your party member has been accused of molestation and rape, there isn’t much that you could say.”

Muskan Dhar, the Vice-president of Women’s Development Cell of Miranda House, when asked if the booing was fair, said, “We heard Abhigyan and he was pretty correct in saying that the ICCs are not functional. As an ICC candidate, I know the kind of resistance we face in having meetings. The candidate from NSUI, however, did not have any proper manifesto. How Miranda reacted to it was two-fold. Some of it was justified since we know of the increasing violence around the campus, but I think we could have channelised our concerns in a better way.”

No official candidate of ABVP showed up and no official reasons were submitted for. Later in a notice released by the Staff Advisors of Miranda House, it was informed that the ABVP candidates would address the students of Miranda House tomorrow at from 12:45 to 1 p.m.

Feature Image Credits: Mahi for DU Beat

Sara Sohail

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The Chatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS) is all set to make a comeback to the University of Delhi’s (DU) scene of student politics this year.

The Aam Aadmi Party’s student wing, the Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS), will contest the Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU) polls, to be held in September 2018. The announcement was made by Labour Minister Gopal Rai on Monday, at an event at DU’s North Campus. CYSS President Sumit Yadav, along with AAP MLAs Ajesh Yadav and Pankaj Pushkar, was also present on the occasion.

Mr. Rai was the Chief Guest at the ‘Talk of the Country’ programme organised by the CYSS, where he reminisced about the revolutionary spirit of students and youth which played an integral part in bringing about positive change in Indian history. He advocated the aim of the CYSS to steer student politics in DU towards a positive direction.

After their infamous debut in 2015, the CYSS had decided to boycott the DUSU elections citing that the ‘Lyngdoh Committee Recommendations’ were not being followed at the University. These recommendations are a set of guidelines regarding eligibility criteria of candidates, transparency in expenditure during elections as well as the barring of candidates from re-contesting, irrespective of whether they’ve won or lost in the election.

Notably, many quarters of the varsity are apprehensive about the National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) and the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad’s (ABVP) approach to politics and means of exerting influence. They are of the belief that the students at DU have grown accustomed to expecting freebies, such as free food coupons and movie tickets along with extensive traffic jams caused by party campaign vehicles, in the eve of the DUSU polls.

The entry of CYSS could either be a breath of fresh air in student politics at DU or it could simply remain as an instrument to which the people would attribute the success (or lack thereof) of the AAP in New Delhi. Regardless, the build-up to the 2018 DUSU elections is intense, and perhaps it holds promise for change.

Feature Image Credits: Chatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti

Nikita Bhatia

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What was once termed as a force to reckon with, is now merely a shadow of its past. Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS), the student wing of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) contested in the 2015 Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU) elections but did not win. CYSS was the star debutante in the 2015 elections and was perceived at the time a strong opposition to the hegemony established by NSUI and ABVP in previous DUSU elections.
Students who were disappointed with the political climate then considered CYSS as a strong third alternative to clean up the murky politics. Despite huge hoardings of Arvind Kejriwal greeting students and asking for votes, CYSS did not win any seat and scored 16% of the total vote share. Barring a candle-light march to protest against ABVP’s hooliganism in the Ramjas row, it has been relatively absent from the DU political scene in 2017.

While it’s a speculative ‘fact’ that parent party’s win directly correlates to the chances of its student wing winning; why did CYSS lose in 2015, when AAP government raked a record 67 out of 70 seats in the Delhi legislative assembly elections? The agendas of CYSS are largely similar in ideology to AAP’s, which pertain to everyday issues of a student and plan to ensure a corruption-free university.

Anmol Panwar, the CYSS spokesperson and Vice-President, in conversation with DU Beat, said, “We boycotted elections last year because we don’t support the current muscle and money power politics in DUSU. Once DUSU candidates are declared, countless pamphlets are thrown in contravention to the Lyngdoh Committee recommendations (LCR). University authorities are aware, complaints are filed, but no action is taken against the perpetrators. Because of this, independent candidates with great ideas lose out to the bigger parties. If the situation changes, we could contest this year too.”
Leading up to the 2015 elections, CYSS was involved in multiple controversies. In 2015, CYSS faced backlash for putting up ‘fake’ posters of opinion polls that it would win 45% of the total votes; the veracity of which could not be verified. Similarly, opposition parties alleged that more than 50 hoardings had been put up across the capital, which was in violation to LCR which states that candidates cannot spend more than INR 5000 in campaigning. In September the same year, a concert, ‘DU Rocks’ was organised which had celebrities like Jasleen Royal, Vishal Dadlani(AAP supporter) and Arvind Kejriwal himself addressing the gathering.

The LCR clearly calls for disassociation of student elections and student representation from political parties. These allegations, amid dwindling support and lack of trust for AAP government in Delhi back then moulded into a sticky situation for CYSS. There’s always a chance the party may make a comeback, the same depending on their ability to garner support through the LCR guidelines it accuses others of not following.

Image Credits: pumirror.in


Vijeata Balani

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Amidst tight security provided by the Delhi Police, the season of campaigning finally came to an end as voting for the Delhi University Students’ Union concluded on Friday. The results of the elections will be declared on Saturday at noon.

The turnout was reported to be over 44% for morning colleges. The turnout for evening colleges will be confirmed later. Last year, the figure for morning colleges stood at 42.3%. Voting began at 8:30AM and went on till 12:30PM for morning colleges.

#Live: Voting has begun! Do go out and exercise your right and responsibility this year at the #DUSU #election 2015.By Shraman Ghosh for DU Beat

Posted by DU Beat on Thursday, 10 September 2015

Elections for college unions were also conducted on Friday. The results for the same were announced on the same day.

Major parties like ABVP, NSUI, CYSS and AISA halted campaigning on the 9th. AAP’s CYSS is the new entrant to DU’s politics this year. Last year, ABVP swept all 4 seats of the DUSU.

DUSU is one of the most influential students’ unions of the country; numerous past office-bearers, Arun Jaitley and Ajay Maken to name a few, have gone ahead to hold public offices in Central and State Governments.

Image credits: Jasmine Chahal

Still haven’t decided your vote? Here’s a little insight into the parties contesting for Delhi Union Students’ Union election 2015.

ABVP – can they do another 2014?

Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad is the only major right-wing representation in DU’s political pitch. ABVP is the student wing of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and shares nationalist ideologies with the Bharatiya Janata Party. ABVP has presided over DUSU 22 times since the establishment of the students’ union. Riding on the anti-Congress mood of the nation, ABVP clean swept the DUSU polls last year with a decisive margin.

Past activities and stands

The party took an offensive stand against the Four Year Undergraduate Programme in 2013 and in 2014, after the election of a BJP government in the centre and a full-blown tussle between the University Grants Commission and the University of Delhi, FYUP was rolled back by DU. ABVP is known to be anti-homosexuality and an opponent of live-in relationships. In October last year, ABVP formed a human chain in the University to “sensitise students about the menace of live-in relationships”. ABVP’s karyakartas also locked horns with rival party All India Students’ Association in November over Kiss of Love, a movement against moral-policing supported by AISA.

ABVP has raised several issues pertaining to DU students in the past, including reintroduction of the schemes of revaluation and ‘special chance’. After Arvind Kejriwal’s successful bid for Delhi’s Chief Ministerial post, ABVP office bearers met with the CM to discuss issues related to the University.
DU Beat’s DUSU Opinion Shows ABVP to be winning by a small margin. Read more here.

Candidates for 2015 

ABVP has fielded the Joint Secretary of its Delhi chapter, Satender Awana, for the post of the President. He is presently pursuing M.A. Buddhist Studies. Sunny Dedha, a student of the Faculty of Law, is contesting for the post of Vice President. Anjali Rana, a student of history at Lakshmi Bai College, is the party’s pick for the post of the Secretary of DUSU whereas for the post of Joint Secretary, Chhatar Pal Yadav has filed his nomination. The ballot numbers for the ABVP panel are 1, 1, 4 and 4.

AISA – Gunning for #1

The All India Students’ Association emerged as a galvanising force in 1990 grounding itself on the ideology of the Naxalbari peasant movement and the 1974 peoples’ movement in Bihar. The organisation believes that Marxism can liberate the society and can lead to human emancipation. Its critical stand towards ‘fascism’ and political forces that divide masses on religious lines is what inspires belief in its members.

Past Activities and Stands

The organisation’s support for the labour rights and the working class has been both evident and lauded by many left scholars.It has also been at the forefront of the movement against criminalisation of politics.

AISA has voiced its dissent whenever instances of privatisation in the realm of education have germinated in the country. It has been vocal against the Choice Based Credit System (CBCS) and the Lyngdoh Committee recommendations. The liberal nature of this organisation and its structure, which is devoid of communal elements, has attracted the attention of many civil society members. In the 2014 DUSU elections, the organisation came as the third force after both the parties.

Candidates for 2015

For 2015, Sheetal Bhopal of Hindu College is contesting for the post of President. Sudhanshu Shekhar of Sri Aurobindo College has been pitched for the Vice-Presidential post. Ravi Kumar of Ramjas College and Abhinav Kumar of Deshbandhu College are contesting for the positions of Secretary and Joint Secretary respectively.

CYSS- The Newbie to change it all?

The Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS), the AAP supported student body, is all set to make its debut in the Delhi University elections scheduled to be held on September 11. With AAP and Arvind Kejriwal’s ideas in mind, CYSS is committed to ending money and muscle power in campus elections. CYSS claims a strong level of intra-party coordination and a firm adherence to clean and honest politics. They believe that the crippling problems of the nation like corruption and hunger can be solved if parties stand by clean politics. Focusing on student issues, they want to rid the election scenario of vulgar splashing of money and the intimidating presence of outsiders.

Past activities and stands

CYSS has made three issues the focus of its campaign as seen in their manifesto. Providing WiFi facilities in all public places and high footfall areas of North and South Campus, monthly job fairs in the 11 revenue districts of Delhi and implementing an education loan scheme and providing opportunities to help DU students become job creators and not just job seekers. However, CYSS had recently found itself amidst allegations of publicising ‘fake’ opinion polls and advertising on hundreds of billboards across the city. Their claims of being a ‘clean’ party and standing for honest politics got into more trouble when the party organised a star studded concert at Talkatora Stadium. The Chief Minister also addressed the students of Delhi University, promising them higher education loan schemes, one lakh jobs within a year and free WiFi in colleges, when endorsement of candidates by political parties is not permitted according to university norms. Lyngdoh Committee recommendations speak of a budget of Rs 5000 for campaigning. It would seem the actions of the party have been contradictory to their claims of ‘clean’ politics.

Candidates for 2015

Standing from the CYSS panel are Kuldeep Bidhuri, a second year B.A Programme student from PGDAV (morning) college, for the post of President, Garima Rana, a state-level badminton player from Hindu College, for the post of Vice President, Rahul Raj Aryan, a university gold medalist from Hindu college, for the post of Secretary and Hintanshi Chauhan from Satyawati College for the post of Joint Secretary.

NSUI- A Force to Reckon with?

A proud Centrist party, NSUI came into being on 9 April 1971, and boasts of 4 million members and around 1,30,000 office bearers and units in 14,500 colleges across the country.
Their mission is to “empower the student community, to create responsible citizens and leaders based on the values of democracy, secularism, liberty, quality & equality”.

Past Activities and Stands

In their 20-point manifesto for 2015, NSUI has focused on four main issues- rollback of the CBCS system, demand for atleast two hostels each in the North and South Campuses, proper water facilities in all colleges, and improvement of administrative management across the university for procedures like submission of the examination forms. In addition to these, they have also stressed on the importance of issues like lack of WiFi access in colleges and the tedious schedule of evening colleges.
Their campaign strategy works on ‘conventional is cool’. According to them, the glamorous and star-studded campaigns being run by other parties aren’t good tactics.

Candidates for 2015

For the 2015 DUSU elections, NSUI has fielded Pradeep Vijayran, a final year LLB student from the Faculty of Law, as their Presidential Candidate, Prerna Singh from Ram Lal Anand College as their Vice-Presidential candidate, Amit Sehrawat from the Faculty of Law for the post of the Secretary and Deepak Chaudhary from Hansraj College for the post of the Joint Secretary.

SFI- Aiming to Reform DU

“Curb money and muscle power in the University of Delhi,” said Prashant, a State Committee Member of the Students’ Federation of India. In the 2015 DUSU Elections, SFI is aiming for that and to stop mishaps in the University.

Past Activities and Stands

Unlike many other student political parties, SFI has a different manifesto, which includes removal of the Choice Based Credit System, better accommodation in hostels and rent-control for PGs and Flats, sorting out the matter of the LLB Course of the University not being recognised by the Bar Council and granting of the “MCM Scholarships”, which were started in 2002 by SFI.

SFI has continued to have an alliance with All India Students Organisation- the AIDSO Alliance. This is to stop the fractioning of the left votes in the university and to amalgamate the left force to defeat the predominant right wing of the university.

The Candidates for 2015

The candidates being fielded by SFI are Chand Mahal Ruby, a 3rd year Political Science student from Ramjas College, for the post of the President, Qasim Masumi, pursuing masters from School of Social Work, for the post of the Vice-President, Ashraf Ali standing, a student at Moti Lal Nehru College and the AIDSO Alliance candidate, for the post of the Secretary and Ashish Chauhan, a student at Zakir Hussain Evening College, for the post of the Joint Secretary.

Image Credits- youthkiawaaz.com

Sidhant R. Seth
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Riya Chhibber
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Arindam Goswami
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Sidharth Yadav
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Ishaan Gambhir
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Delhi University goes to polls for the Student Union elections on Friday, September 11. With NSUI, AISA and the newcomer CYSS aiming to topple ABVP off the top, DU Beat attempted to gauge what is running through an average DU student’s mind.by conducting an online DUSU Opinion Poll which was taken by hundreds of students. Here are the key takeaways from the results:-

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By Aditya Rathore for DU Beat

1) ABVP barely edging past CYSS

After a clean sweep in the DUSU elections last year with a clear margin, Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) seems to be headed for another win this year too, with almost 35% of the respondents giving them their vote. Their decisive margin of victory might be in trouble because of Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS), the student wing of AAP that will be making its debut in the DUSU elections this year. CYSS takes the second position, with nearly 31% respondents saying they will vote for them. These are followed by All India Students’ Association (AISA), The National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) and other parties, who have 14.7%, 13.2% and 6.6% of the votes respectively.

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2) Second consecutive term for ABVP after a “meh” year

ABVP’s lead in the polls is not surprising but definitely worth pondering over, given that most respondents-around 44% of them- rated the outgoing union (led by ABVP) as not up to the mark. Only a mere 20% of the respondents rated their performance as ‘Brilliant’, while 34% opted for ‘Poor’. The right-wing party has been criticised for its stand against homosexuality and live-in relationships, which might have led to a decrease in their approval in the progressive atmosphere of the University. Their push for important issues like the rollback of the FYUP, reintroduction of revaluation and ‘special chance’ may get them enough votes to secure another win.Fullscreen capture 982015 92033 PM.bmp

3) Rent regulation a hot topic yet again

Rent regulation for flats and PG accommodations as well as more hostels emerged as the most important agenda (31.6%), followed by the Curriculum (20%) which has been under fire because of the implementation of the hotly debated Choice Based Credit System (27.1%). These were followed by the ever-relevant demands for more colleges and seats as a way to counter the astronomically high cut-offs (20%), better Transportation facilities (6.7%) and calls for Gender Equality (6.7%). 

Related reading: What is rent regulation and why is it such a big deal

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4) Parties’ national affiliations a major deciding factor- ‘Modi wave’ still doing the trick for ABVP?

Another notable result was the importance respondents gave to the national political alignment of student bodies. It’s common knowledge that all parties in DUSU are associated with some or the other National political party, like ABVP with BJP, and NSUI with Congress. According to the results, this association affects the voting decisions of more than 51% respondents. This might be due to the understanding that if the party reigning DUSU is in sync with the national or state government, it would ensure smooth functioning and better and faster implementation of changes.

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5) Over half the respondents offered freebies

Ironically, with all the cacophony about ‘cleaning’ student politics and reducing muscle power, a whooping 57% respondents witnessed or were offered freebies in an attempt to woo them for their votes. Parties have been known to openly flout the rules by offering movie tickets and *ahem* organising concerts. 

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As a follow up to the DUSU Opinion Poll and to ensure the parties get a structured platform to present their agendas to students and that students get to make an informed decision, DU Beat is organising Delhi University’s first Presidential Debate at 6 PM, 9 September at Press Club of India, Raisina Road. The debate will be streamed live. Read more about it here. Here’s hoping for clean polls and an effective and decisive Union that puts the interest of the students first!



Disclaimer: The results have been drawn solely from the responses we received. DU Beat does not claim for these to be the actual results of Delhi University Students’ Union election 2015.