September 13, 2015 2:39:00 am
Outside the counting centre for the Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU) elections, the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) celebrated its clean sweep by bursting crackers and chanting slogans, while members of other unions looked on.
Almost all bodies which were in the running — National Students’ Union of India (NSUI), All India Students’ Association (AISA), Indian National Students’ Organisation (INSO), Students’ Organisation of India (SIO), Students’ Federation of India (SFI) and All India Democratic Students’ Organisation (AIDSO) — were present. Noticeably absent were members of the AAP-backed Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS).
While activists and supporters of the CYSS had turned up earlier to give sound bytes to the media, they left once it became clear that ABVP was set to win all four seats. “We were at the counting centre, but we left after soon after. It wasn’t because we thought we had lost. But yes, the ABVP had already started celebrating and were shouting slogans, so we thought it’s better to leave,” said CYSS vice-president Anmol Panwar.
Two of the CYSS candidates — Garima Rana and Hitanshi Chauhan — were not even present during the counting; they had sent their nominees instead. “They were simply running late so we decided to send the backup nominees. I was one of them,” said Panwar.
The results are expected to be a setback for the AAP-backed union, which had gone all out to woo students in its debut foray in campus politics. From putting up posters of party supremo Arvind Kejriwal to AAP MLAs campaigning across colleges, the CYSS had tried many ways to reach out to voters.
Meanwhile, opponents took the opportunity to take a dig at the party. Former AAP leader Yogendra Yadav tweeted, “DUSU lesson: This is what happens if new politics tries to follow dirty tricks of old politics.” While the CYSS acknowledged that it had made some “mistakes”, it claimed that it had only stayed true to its ideology of “clean politics”.
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