DUSU Polls: The butt of all jokes

The Delhi University Students Elections has seen, what one can say, a remarkably ridiculous year 2007, sending it in disarrays and revealing the stark truth behind the validity of its candidates contesting elections. This was triggered by the Delhi High Court’s decision to vacate the stay on Clause 7 of the model code of conduct, which prohibits the candidates with academic arrears from contesting elections. It has also been made compulsory for the candidates to have a minimum of 75% attendance in their respective courses.

In addition to this the Delhi High Court has also imposed a restriction on the age of the candidates contesting elections and has made it mandatory for candidates to be within the age group of 17-22 years, for those pursuing their bachelor’s degree, and upto 25 years age for those doing their masters. This has been imposed after observing that students seek readmission in courses of DU every year just to be able to contest elections as these are considered to be a ticket to membership of political parties and later on the Lok Sabha and the Parliament. Following this decision, keeping with the Supreme Court-appointed Lyngdoh commission’s guidelines, 10 nominees of the DUSU elections have been disqualified!! This makes one wonder that why did political parties backing these students and the Delhi University administration in-charge for these elections even allow these erratic students to stand for the elections in the first place? Student politics should ideally be exemplary and dynamic, with candidates who are not only ready to ensure smooth functioning of the Delhi University and addressing concerns of students, but also with a penchant to serve the nation and become statesmen instead of mere political leaders. This hardly seems to be the case in the University of the country’s capital.

The manner in which these polls are conducted reflects the sorry state of affairs of student politics in our country. The accountability associated with a candidate contesting for various important posts, and from persons belonging to groups supported by National Parties, is completely missing. At the time of elections you can see the Delhi University campus strewn across with pamphlets containing smiling faces of these candidates, as if looks are a criteria for becoming the Students Union President. All laws concerning the publicity and campaigns conducted for these elections are flouted without any fear of repercussions. The rallies are conducted by huge armies of men in trucks and expensive cars none of whom appear to be students, shouting irrational slogans on loudspeakers, leading to traffic jams, while these “students” can be seen indulging in unfounded display of wealth and support of political parties. Classes in many colleges are disrupted because of these campaigns. All this exposes the murky and filthy side of the student politics, which is anything but transparent and provides hardly any benefit to the average college going student. These polls have become a breeding ground for power-hungry candidates who treat these elections as a promising ticket to their journey and foray into national politics. But we must realize that if these so-called “students” are the future leaders of our country, my friends, our country is in grave danger. Our country which prides itself on being on a fast track to progress, considering that 60% of the country’s population is below 25 years of age, it would be necessary to break this myth sooner than later. There is little in this fact to rejoice about considering the present scenario. Gone are the days when we had enthusiastic, dynamic leaders like Jawaharlal Nehru, Sardar Vallabhai Patel, and the league, who had a vision for our country, our nation, but now our system is being governed by petty politicians with vested interests for whom the welfare of the country and its citizens is of no importance. It is extremely heart wrenching to see the youth of the country wasted away in petty politics and indulging in many anti-social activities in the name of politics.

There is an urgent need for the people, concerned with regulating these students’ elections, to seriously probe into the matter and make way for sincere candidates who are selected on a transparent basis and have genuine interests at heart. These students represent the youth at the very threshold of becoming our future leaders and taking our country to greater heights. If this very clique of honest, dedicated fuel of the nation is lost, there will be little hope left for our country, which will sink deeper, at the hands of murky politics.