Among the many eccentricities of election preparations in DU is, this year, up to four extra ‘A’s in candidates’ names. While the trend of Delhi University Students Union (DUSU) hopefuls adding one or at the most two extra ‘A’s before their names is common, this time, in a bid to get ballot no. 1, some have gone overboard and added as many as four preceding ‘A’s.
Sample, for instance, AAAA Kapil Sharma, AAAA Utkarsh Chaudhary, and close on their heels, aaa Karishma Thakur. “Prospects start the preparations for name change months before the election,” says Amrish Ranjan Pandey, spokesperson NSUI.
“Many students are not aware of names of candidates and end up voting for those in the ballots with the starting numbers. It helps with a 1,000 votes at least,” says Rohit Chahal, state secretary ABVP.
Then, there are the double ‘A’s. Presidential candidates for two of the biggest parties — National Students' Union of India (NSUI) and Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) — have changed their names to A. A. Vishal Chaudhary and AA Aman Awana respectively. The one with the period scores. “The alphabet in lower case holds more of a chance to land them ballot number 1, and the possibility is even higher if special symbols are added,” says Vikas Dahiya, former DUSU VP.
“My name is A.A. Vishal Chaudhary for life now. I got this to get ballot number 1. I followed the entire legal procedure to change it,” says Chaudhary.