It is generally said that no one can stay aloof from politics. You have to be in it, either by choice or by design.
A look at the backgrounds of the 21 candidates in the contest for the four posts in the Panjab University Campus Students’ Council (PUCSC) aptly bears this out.
There are those with a humble background, like Somnath Thakur, a PhD scholar fighting for the secretary’s post from the Students’ Organisation of India (SOI) alliance. He is the son of a fitter with the department of irrigation and public health.
One can also meet Anil Kumar, a presidential candidate, is the son of a retired subedar.
The single girl child, Sunimrat Kaur, of a retired engineer at the Chandigarh administration, admitted in a special quota, is another candidate being talked about, for the post of vice-president from the PUSU alliance.
“With Lyngdoh guidelines in place, campus politics have changed. Now, you have those running the show behind the scene and the studious fighting elections. I wonder, how a shy boy Chandan Rana, a research scholar, gives better speeches than many of us,” says Dinesh Chauhan, senior ABVP leader on the campus.
Ankur Kumar, a candidate of the SOI alliance, comes from a remote place in Jharkhand, son of a marginal farmer. You also have Abhishek Thapar, a candidate of PUSU alliance, the son of a banker father and doctor mother from Gurdaspur.
“NSUI fielded a candidate Divyanshu Budhiraja who comes from Gohana in Haryana. He does not have any political background. The NSUI did not give a ticket to Nishant Maini, who could have been an easy choice, being the grandson of Congress leader, GK Chatrath,” says a NSUI leader.
More than five candidates are research scholars, who in their previous avatars, used to refuse to even talk and are remain busy bringing the roof down.