PU senate elections set to witness two-cornered contest
Polling for the 91-member apex governing body of the university will start on August 24.Updated: Aug 08, 2020 20:16 IST
With the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) group joining hands with DAV group and Sangha group against the alliance of Navdeep Goyal and Ashok Goyal, the Panjab University senate elections are headed for a two-cornered contest this year.
Polling for the 91-member apex governing body of the university will start on August 24. The last senate elections were held in 2016. Of the total 91 members, 36 are nominated by the varsity’s chancellor.
The term of the new PU senate will begin in November 2020 and last till October 2024.
Highlighting the need for a major alliance against the Goyal group, the BJP group, which is led by senator Subhash Sharma, will contest the elections in alliance with DAV group led by Gurdeeep Sharma and Sangha group led by SS Sangha and Varinder Singh Gill.
During the last election of PU senate, Ashok and Navdeep were in opposite camps. The alliance between their power groups was forged during the syndicate elections of 2018.
Earlier, the two rival alliances – Goyal and BJP groups – also held differing views over the conduct of senate elections amid the pandemic and wrote letters to PU’s chancellor M Venkaiah Naidu.
CONSTITUENCY OF FACULTIES
The election from the constituency of faculties is scheduled on August 24, with both alliances pitting their contestants against each other.
Interestingly, both Ashok and Navdeep are contesting from faculties, which will contribute six members to the senate.
In the faculty of arts, Ronki Ram from Goyal group will contest against Anju Suri of the opposite camp, who is contesting for the first time. Navdeep is contesting the election from the faculty of science and Promila Pathak, former PUTA president, has been fielded against him from the rival side.
From the Goyal group, PUTA president Rajesh Gill will contest against Gurpal Singh in the faculty of languages.
Keshav Molhotra will battle it out from combined faculty against Naval Kishore, and from faculty of law, Anu Chatrath from Goyal Group is contesting against Jagjot Singh Lali.
PGI doctor in fray
As Ashok remains a powerful candidate from the Goyal alliance, the opposite camp has pitted Dr Sarvjeet Singh Dhatt against him in the medical faculty. Dr Dhatt is additional professor of prthopaedics at Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh.
Besides the constituency of faculties, the two alliances are fielding their candidates from other constituencies as well.
After the election of faculties on August 24, polling of technical and professional colleges is scheduled on September 7, followed by the election of campus teaching departments on September 14. For representatives from registered graduate constituency, and college principals and lecturers, elections will be held on September 20.
From campus, two members are elected from professors and two from the readers and lecturers in the teaching departments.
Most of the candidates in the alliance led by the BJP group are contesting the elections for the first time. These include Anju Suri, Dr Sarvjeet Singh Dhatt, Gurpal Singh and Jagjot Singh Lali.
“This is the first time that we are contesting on all 10 seats from the campus. We will be represented by new faces and are hopeful of winning all seats,” said Subhash Sharma.
Navdeep said, “We field our candidates from different constituencies according to our strength. As many as 33 members of our group are in fray this time from all constituencies. We are in a good position to win all 10 seats from campus.”