Elections are on, Panjab University VC | chandigarh | Hindustan Times
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Elections are on, Panjab University VC

Panjab University vice-chancellor AK Grover set the ball rolling for Panjab University Campus Student Council (PUSCS) polls on Friday, by stating that he was in the favour of holding elections. However, he did list out a caveat that it was important that students did not resort to violence.

chandigarh Updated: Aug 08, 2014 23:41 IST
HT Correspondent

Panjab University vice-chancellor AK Grover set the ball rolling for Panjab University Campus Student Council (PUSCS) polls on Friday, by stating that he was in the favour of holding elections. However, he did list out a caveat that it was important that students did not resort to violence.


Grover, along with the SSP, Chandigarh police, Sukhchain Singh and top PU officials met the leaders of student political parties and is learnt to have categorically told them that elections would happen, but students should use restraint and violence would not be tolerated.

Officials claimed if everything went well, elections would be held around September 15. In the past eight months, the Chandigarh Police have registered at least nine cases against PU students. SSP Gill is learnt to have told students that only seven cases were reported during the entire year in 2013.

THE NUMBERS
The campus has nearly a dozen parties, but PU does not recognize political parties. Votes are sought in the name of individual candidates supported by parties. There are nearly 15,000 voters for the
four-member student council.

THE PARTIES
Mainstream political parties including that of the student wing of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), the Student Organization of India (SOI), the NSUI and others have resorted to aggressive campaigning this year to wrest power, even as uncertainty did seem to hover the schedule of elections and if in fact they would be held. However, violence has been reported as a result of the aggressive posturing.

The PU and police administration is learnt to have decided to watch activities of students parties for next 15 days, following which they would review the situation and recommend elections if situation improves. Earlier in the day, Grover had told reporters: "I am for elections. We cannot allow holding of elections, if there are incidents of violence every now and then."

The VC appeared helpless in setting the house in order and said that they could hardly do anything against these 'bunch of students' responsible for violence on the campus. "Anybody can take admission here. There is no mechanism to deny admission to anybody. But I cannot let suffer others at the cost of these few," he had said.


THE NUTS AND BOLTS OF POLLS
"15,000 voters to exercise franchise to elect four office bearers of Panjab University Campus Student Council (PUCSC) president, vice president, secretary and joint secretary
"The campus has nearly a dozen parties but PU does not recognize political parties and elections are held by voting to individual candidates, who are allotted symbols
"Elections are likely to take place around September 15 this year

THE CONCERN: FEAR OF VIOLENCE
In the past eight months at least nine cases have been registered with the Chandigarh police of various offences committed by PU students.

July 1: Seven people, including PU chief security officer Jatinder Grover suffered injuries as clashes between Student Organization of India (SOI) and Panjab University Student Union (PUSU) occurred at the helpdesks over a student leader switching parties.

July 30: Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) student leader, Abhishek Luthra was injured when he was beaten up by members of the Student Organization of India (SOI) at Hostel Number 8.

Party issued notices for violation
Panjab University on Friday issued a notice to the Student Organization of Panjab University (SOPU) for pasting posters on non-designated sites for the purpose and carrying out a car rally, earlier this week, on campus. On Thursday, two student parties Panjab University Students Union (PUSU) and National Students Union of India (NSUI) were issued show-cause notices. PUSU was issued notice for carrying out a car rally and NSUI for pasting posters on non- designated sites.