Don’t wear round neck T-shirts. Avoid wearing slippers. Wear neatly ironed kurta-pyjama. These are among the instructions given by student leaders on Panjab University (PU) campus to members of the student organisations who are guiding newcomers about the admission process. The objective is to make a good first impression on the freshers in a bid to woo them in the run up to the elections to Panjab University Campus Students Council.
“Its a big plus point if the members of our organisation are dressed properly and are well mannered. It helps attract attention of students especially the freshers who are coming to the university for the first time. If a person is shabbily dressed it makes the students who come during admissions feel a little hesitant to talk to to them,” said Kanwar Rana, campus in-charge of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP).
There are several student organisations that are active on the campus and are competing with one another for their share of votes. Leaving nothing to chance, they are also trying to cash in on the face value of the student leaders.
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President of the Chandigarh Unit of Students Organisation of India (SOI), Vicky Middhukhera said, “We make it a point that our party workers are properly dressed during elections because it has an impact on leaving an impression on the freshers and also creates a goodwill among the students regarding the party.”
The members of student parties felt that the manner of approaching a student makes a lot of difference and you have to be highly professional while doing so.
“Usually, the mindset of the people is such that student politics only involves the ‘vehla’ students as there is nothing much to gain from it. This is absolutely wrong as it teaches you how to do things in a professional manner and dressing up properly makes you look like a professional during interaction with students. Slowly it adds up to your personality, helping in making you a known figure,” said Yash Sura an ABVP member, who was busy helping newcomers on the campus.
Panjab University Students’ Union President Nirjog Mann said, “Earlier, some of our members used to wear slippers and come to address the students which made a bad first impression. Good manners and dressing well go hand in hand. If you fail at any one of these, it becomes tough to attract the young crowd. After becoming the president of the PUSU party, I made sure that every party worker is in proper attire. Campaigning during elections is basically an internship in politics and while doing your internship you have to be dressed in a proper manner.”