Delhi University (DU)’s North Campus has turned into a veritable war-zone. From canteens and cars to desks and dustbins, candidates follow students wherever they go, urging them to vote for them, for ‘development’, ‘equality’ and ‘fairness’. In a bid to out-do each other, parties offer students everything, from free Wi-Fi to new colleges.
Forty kilometres away, in another DU college, the same elections are being fought, albeit on very different lines. “Everybody calls it a college, but this is more like a rundown MCD (Municipal Corporation of Delhi) school. Students still don’t have basic facilities,” said a student at Bhagini Nivedita College in Najafgarh.
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From having more than one mirror in the washroom to having a canteen that serves clean, palatable food, students at this college just want facilities available in an average DU college. “We just want what every decent college should have. Clean toilets where there is soap to wash hands… more than one mirror in the washroom, so 10 girls don’t queue up every time they want to wash their hair. A canteen that serves edible food in case I forget my lunch. It’s not much to ask but in three years of college, no party has been able to deliver even this,” said another student.
Others want sports facilities and coaches who can train them. “We have a playground but there are no facilities for girls who play sports… no coaches for training. This is what the college needs now. Free Wi-Fi can come later,” said a student.
Last year, the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) swept the students’ union elections in the college with the National Students’ Union of India bagging one seat. But the parties admit to not being able to do much in the college. “Perhaps, it’s the distance — the college being so far away from North Campus. I don’t know. I just know I feel embarrassed to tell anyone I study in this college,” said a student.
“It is the same story every year. They sell the same promises here that they do in North Campus, but it doesn’t work. We are yet to see a party that works on what students really need in this college,” another student said. Established in 1993, the college is an all-girls campus in Kair village, 6.5 km off Najafgarh.
* College is located 40 km away from North Campus, in Najafgarh’s Kair village. Nearest Metro station is Dwarka Mor
“Everybody calls it a college but this is more like a rundown MCD school. We don’t have basic facilities. I feel embarrassed to tell anyone I study in this college”- A student