PU Poll post-mortem: Old parties lose campus footinghttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/chandigarh/pu-poll-post-mortem-old-parties-lose-campus-footing/

PU Poll post-mortem: Old parties lose campus footing

The NSUI’s reign on Panjab University has ended with this year’s verdict.

Election campaign material on roads in Chandigarh on Thursday. (Source: Express Photo by Sahil Walia)
Election campaign material on roads in Chandigarh on Thursday. (Source: Express Photo by Sahil Walia)

Older parties of Panjab University have lost their foothold on the campus with the SOI panel comprising Himachal Students’ Union, Indian National Students Organisation, Gandhi Group Students’ Union, National Students’ Organisation and Youth Organisation of India sweeping the students election this year.

While the newer parties have emerged victorious, organisations like Panjab University Students’ Union (PUSU), Students’ Organisation of Panjab University (SOPU), Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) are nowhere to be seen.

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The NSUI’s reign on Panjab University has ended with this year’s verdict. NSUI had recorded a win in the PU students election for the past two years, but this year the party has not won even a single seat in the students’ council. It has only managed to win three seats at the Government College of Commerce and Business Administration, Sector 42.

NSUI’s presidential candidate Puneet Sharma said, “The party leaders are now going to look into why NSUI lost this year. We plan to rectify our mistakes and will make sure that NSUI does not lose its foothold in the university.”

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Students’ Organisation of Panjab University (SOPU) had been ruling the campus politics since the 90s, when the elections were started. It had come into existence in 1997 after defeating another homegrown students organisation, Panjab University Students’ Union.

PUSU lost the elections for the fifth consecutive year and did not secure any key posts, whereas SOPU was coming out with sweeping victory every year.

However, in 2013, after almost a decade both PUSU and SOPU parties had failed to win a single seat in the PU Campus Students Council and in 2014, SOPU had again lost it to NSUI bagging three seats and PUSU winning one.

Unfortunately, 2014 students’ election was the last election for SOPU as the senior leaders of the party had quit and of the 18 student organizations on the campus contesting for the election this year, SOPU was the only party for which nobody volunteered to take charge of it.

Initially, it was observed that though SOPU had lost its existence on the PU campus, it was active in the city colleges but going by the results, SOPU could only manage to win two seats at PGGC-46.

Last year, PUSU had managed to win one post in the students’ council. This year, even after having formed an alliance with ABVP, the party has not won any seat. The BJP student wing ABVP, which is another old party of PU, has also not recorded a win for the past two years.

Members of PUSU said they were glad about finishing second in the election, if not last. “We have over powered one stooge of a political party and now we will look into making our party stronger so that we win the election next year,” said PUSU’s presidential candidate for PU Baljinder Singh.