Bunty, Vicky, Mauji, are some of the names that reverberate in your ears when you are on Panjab University (PU) campus during elections. Punjabis’ love for nicknames is something new, but prominent leaders rely on aliases to connect with the voters. In the hope of increasing their popularity, student leaders take to catchy nicknames year after year. The trend has been more closely observed among leaders of National Student Union of India (NSUI) and Student Organisation of India (SOI). For regular visitors to the Student Centre, these names bring with them certain sense of déjà-vu laced with the cool quotient, of course.
SOI’s Bunty Romana is actually Parambans Singh - Bunty Romana, but HT was unable to find even five students on the campus who were aware of this fact. Romana considers it a Punjabi thing. “Punjabis turn 70, but they continue to be known as Bunty and Monty, that’s how it works here,” he said, adding that it also gets him welcome attention supporters during elections.
Similarly, Manoj Lubana of NSUI, the party’s top leader, said nicknames enable them to maintain the cool quotient. Also, that’s how it had always been, as it contributed in luring voters. The leader is lovingly known as Mauji.
SOI leader Vikramjit Singh Middukhera has no qualms in admitting to the fact that most of his own friends perhaps don’t know his real name. Known as SOI’s Vicky or Middukhera, he said, “The surname is important as it reveals my village name and people tend to associate with that, this in turn plays an important role during polls.” He said that it has become an identity after leading the SOI panel all these years.
Ask anyone who is Jeevanjot Singh Chahal and one will come across clueless expressions. Wait till you say Jugnu, familiarity jumps in.
Ask him why, he quickly says, “It has got nothing to do with elections, my family members kept that nickname because I didn’t sleep enough, and hence I am like Jugnu.” He added that one doesn’t get to sleep enough during elections either.
The North campus in charge of NSUI who recently joined NSUI-SF Babu Lakhan is no less. Popularly known as Lucky, he said, “Who wants to be called Babu, it sounds irritating. Lucky is short and easy to remember.”
NSUI-SF’s Hardeep Singh Lalli, is popularly known by his nickname Lalli on campus.
The list is endless, but the reasons for these nicknames during PU polls aren’t.