iconimg Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Surender Sharma, Hindustan Times
Chandigarh, September 04, 2013
Panjab University’s homegrown outfits suffered a severe jolt as Congress wing National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) won two out of the four seats, including that of the president, in the PU Campus Students’ Council (PUCSC) elections held amid much drama on Wednesday. The other two seats also went to wings of mainstream parties, though Panjab University Student Union (PUSU) had led the alliance. 

Incumbent Student Organisation of Panjab University (SOPU), which allied with Hindustan Student Association (HSA) and Akali wing Student Organisation of India (SOI), won no seat. It’s for the first time in the past decade that PUSU and SOPU have not got even one seat on campus.

NSUI’s Chandan Rana is the new PUCSC president, and his party’s Sunny Mehta is joint secretary. It was NSUI’s first election at PU after a re-launch by Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi in October. A number of ruling SOPU leaders and some from PUSU had joined, and the party allied with HIMSU.

From the PUSU-led alliance — with Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) wing Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), Indian National Lok Dal (INLD)-affiliated  Indian National Student Organisation (INSO) and the NSO — Disha Arora of ABVP won the vice-president (reserved for girls) seat, while INSO’s Abha Sharma is the new secretary.

Though there was no violence, drama started as soon as news of NSUI’s lead started trickling in. PUSU and SOPU started a dharna at V-C office alleging use of unfair means; police broke up the commotion. After a recount, results came out at 6.15pm, four hours after the expected announcement.

In colleges, PUSU lost face while SOPU managed some seats, but institute-specific parties dominated.