Voices of resentment against the Supreme Court’s stay on Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union (JNUSU) elections have turned louder.
While JNU’s teachers’ association is now openly endorsing the student body’s stand against the stay, the joint struggle committee formed by JNUSU to chart out the future course of action has decided to intensify its stir to protect JNU’s election model.
The joint struggle committee, comprising two representatives from each party and a few independent members, hopes to highlight its concerns through a slew of measures. This includes a call for a strike on November 3, the day the polls were scheduled. Students will send a mass deputation to the Chief Justice of India the same day and protest at India Gate.
“The Supreme Court’s order fails to recognise the unique democratic character of our elections. Even if we wanted to, many of the Lyngdoh Committee recommendations cannot be implemented here. We are a premier research institution and don’t have an attendance system. So the attendance criteria doesn’t... apply here,” said Sandeep Singh, president, JNUSU, which was reinstated after the Election Committee’s resignation on October 24. The union’s term has been extended by three months.
The JNUSU council is also looking at filing a review petition against the order. “We are also trying to seek an appointment with the Chief Justice of India. He is currently not in the country,” Singh said.
According to Kamal Chenoy Mitra, president, JNU Teachers’ Association, the students should try and gain the support of political parties. “The fact that the Supreme Court was moved by the additional solicitor-general shows... it’s not just the court which needs to be convinced but also the government. Some political lobbying should help change the stance of the court as well,” he said.