Whether they are straws in the wind will be a matter of debate, but political equations in Delhi University swung to the right just months ahead of the Delhi Assembly elections later this year.
The Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad wrested control of the Delhi University Students’ Union, winning the posts of president, vice-president and joint secretary in the election results declared amid much frenzy here on Saturday.
Arch rivals and last year’s winners, the National Students’ Union of India, which had won the posts of president, vice-president and secretary last year while tying with the ABVP for joint secretary, only managed to bag the secretary’s post this time.
The new DUSU president is Aman Awana, who polled 17,879 votes, 1,533 more than his nearest rival, the NSUI’s Vishal Chaudhary.
“This is a victory of the youth, which is against corruption,” said Awana, who promised that he would work towards making the university take back its controversial new four-year undergraduate programme.
The post of vice-president was bagged by Utkarsh Chaudhary, who polled 14,968 votes, beating the NSUI’s Kapil Sharma, who got 11,275 votes.
“We will fulfil all the promises we made in our manifesto,” Chaudhary said as soon as the results were announced after a four-hour wait.
Karishma Thakur was the NSUI’s lone winner. She will be the new secretary having polled 14,662 votes, 2,718 more than her nearest rival, the ABVP’s Anshu Lakra.
The final post of joint secretary was clinched by the ABVP’s Raju Rawat, who polled 15,643 votes, 3,288 more than Kushank Khari of the NSUI.
A surprise factor was the performance of the All India Students’ Association, which got its largest number of votes in recent years.
Its presidential candidate polled 8,229 votes, vice-presidential candidate 6,437, secretary 5,702 and joint secretary 6,621.
“This shows that we are not a distant third option, students are taking us seriously. We are slowly moving towards the winning position,” said the AISA’s Sunny Kumar.
He said the struggle against the four-year undergraduate programme had been hijacked by the ABVP for electoral purposes.
He wished the ABVP will come good on their promise. “We will welcome them if they join this struggle,” he said.
The ABVP’s winners took out the traditional procession from Kingsway Camp, where the counting was done, till the Vivekananda Statue in Arts Faculty before leaving for the ABVP office on Deen Dayal Upadhay Marg.
The procession wound up at the RSS office in Jhandewalan. “We will not be meeting any BJP leaders, we do not follow this tradition,” said ABVP state secretary Rohit Chahal.