Beating dhols, fancy processions and the excitement that reminds one of election time in a university, is not visible in the upcoming elections at the Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union (JNUSU) elections, in spite of the fact that the elections are happening after a gap of four years. “The fun and the charged-up atmosphere of JNU elections have gone because of the latest rules related to the elections,” says Saket Bahuguna, VP, Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), JNU.
For campaigning, the parties are using hand-painted posters just like the ones used in the DU elections, as per the new rules by the Lyngdoh Committee. Though printed material is not allowed, photocopied material can be used in the JNUSU elections. “It is only in these elections that one can manage to campaign at a budget of R5,000, unlike the DU elections,” says Roji John, national vice president, National Students’ Union of India (NSUI).
But all the parties feel that curtailing money spent on JNUSU elections wasn’t necessary unlike the DU elections. “The Lyngdoh Committee is aimed to curtail the money and muscle power, which is unnecessary in JNU elections, unlike other universities. We had to accept the recommendations, but with some relaxations, as JNU needs a student union body,” says Radhika Krishnan, spokesperson of All India Students’ Association (AISA).