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HindustanTimes Sun,20 Apr 2014

College elections set to return after 20-yr ban

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, July 26, 2013
First Published: 09:17 IST(26/7/2013) | Last Updated: 09:21 IST(26/7/2013)

College elections are likely to be back from the next academic session after a gap of 20 years.

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The state government has decided to revive university students’ council elections in the state and will frame a policy to ensure no violence takes place while they are being conducted.

Minister of higher education Rajesh Tope told the legislative assembly on Thursday that he would seek the cabinet’s approval in this regard as soon as possible.

He also said all political parties would be taken into confidence while drafting a policy for violence-free polls.

All parties, except the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena, supported the demand raised by Nationalist Congress Party’s executive president and MLA Jitendra Ahwad.

The NCP has already submitted its demand to the government and has justified it saying the university polls would help develop young leaders.

Tope said he would organise a meeting of major parties with chief minister Prithviraj Chavan before finalising the decision.

The government had stopped council elections in 1993 because of violent events. In Mumbai, a students’ leader was killed.

To ensure these instances are not repeated, MLAs demanded a fool-proof policy to ensure law and order, and asked the government to take responsibility of any untoward incident.

Awhad and his party president Bhaskar Jadhav raised the demand based on a positive report by former election commissioner of India JM Lyngdoh.

The state, too, had formed a panel under MU vice-chancellor Rajan Velukar, who recommended the revival and made a policy for smooth, fair elections.

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