Delhi University goes to poll on Friday, and campaigning fever is at an all-time high. This year, rival parties have taken up the same burning issue — safety for women on campus. All the female candidates say it’s high time for change, and students are happy at the unanimous political support for the cause.
“Making campus safe for women is the main focus of our campaign,” says Soumya Gulia, 18, the presidential candidate from the allied party of All India Students Federation and Students Federation of India — AISF-SFI. “As a girl, I understand how bad things are for women here, especially in South Campus,” she adds.
Neha Singh, 21, the presidential candidate from the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), also talks of sexual harassment in light of recent events, especially the murder of DU student Radhika Tanwar earlier this year. “A professor was accused of harassing students — it is just horrifying that such things... this has to change,” she says.
Parag Sharma, 24, among those who campaigned for Radhika Tanwar’s case to be taken up by the National Commission for Women, is contesting for the post of Secretary from the National Students’ Union of India (NSUI). “No girl should meet the same fate. Safety is one of the biggest issues on campus and union members never take it up,” says Sharma.
Ritu Priya, 23, the vice presidential candidate from AISF-SFI, proposes to make sexual harassment cells across colleges more accessible. “Students are not aware that every college has a cell to help those being harassed. Awareness is what’s most needed,” she says. “I’m glad that parties have all taken up this important cause,” says Aarti Singh, a DU student.