‘Yes to polls, no to politics'
Although the State historically had peaceful students union elections barring a few incidents in the 1980s and 1990s, the students elections are back in the State after a hiatus of nearly 24 years. Sakal Times in a two-part series tries to understand the views and opinions of students, teachers and other stakeholders.
PUNE: University elections have become a hot topic of discussion among students, who feel that their elected college mates can better represent them at the higher platforms. However, all were firm that the students’ elections should be conducted sans political motives.
“These elections give a platform for those who either want to enter into politics or become future leaders. There are many current political leaders, who have been part of these student unions. A student leader is a representative who is aware of several issues of students in the college. They can communicate with the college administration to resolve them,” said Vishal Dabhade, second year BSc student of Fergusson College. “There is a bit of lack of maturity among young students. But if particular ideology and personal relationships are respected, then there are less chances of misunderstandings among them,” he added.
“Elections in colleges will make students familiar with democratic system. But interference by organised student wings of political parties can defeat its good objectives, as they will bring in their money and muscle power with them. Student-related issues and demands should be given top priorities by candidates,” said Mayur Borse, first year student of Master of Journalism and Mass Communication, Ranade Institute.
Javed Pathan, a second year student of BSc from Sir Parashurambhau (SP) College said, “Each student cannot approach the vice-chancellor or principal with their problems. Therefore, if a student representative takes testimony of each problem it will make more impact. They are the bridge between students and administration. But it shouldn’t be influenced by politics, but restricted to real problems of students only.”
He added, “Students from different demographics study in an institution because of which there are ideological differences. But because of the diversity, they also have understanding of it and respect each others’ thoughts. If this is maintained, then there are less chances of any kind of misconducts during the election.”