This post has been self-published on Youth Ki Awaaz by Azra Qaisar. Just like them, anyone can publish on Youth Ki Awaaz.

The Promises Behind Delhi University Elections: How Parties Are Trying To Win Your Votes

More from Azra Qaisar

By Azra Qaisar

delhistudentsvote_1024

With elections less than a week away, Delhi University Students’ Union is witnessing intense political campaigning. All parties are going all out in their bid to gain support from the students in almost 50 colleges that would be casting their vote, this Friday (11th September). Apart from the usual candidates such as Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), National Students’ Union Of India (NSUI) and All India Students’ Association (AISA), this year AAP’s Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS) is also going to enter the race. Student Organisation of India (SOI) would also be participating in the elections along with Students’ Federation Of India (SFI), Indian National Students’ Organisation (INSO) etc. The candidates from most parties are men, with one woman among the four contenders each from ABVP, NSUI and CYSS.

In order to make an informed vote, it is important for the electorate to take a look at the agendas of each student body. For the three major candidates – ABVP, NSUI and CYSS, the DUSU elections are more than exercising control in the university. They are also about the exertion of a certain ideology that a larger political party (BJP, Congress and AAP) stands for.

What The Agendas Say

The ABVP has promised many things pertaining to the law. It has promised to bring in the Paying Guest Regulation Act. It also plans to pressurise the Government of Delhi to implement the Room Rent Control Act. Apart from that they want to create a secure environment for students from North eastern states. Another important part of their agenda is hostel accommodation, while travel also remains an important part of their agenda with University special buses and concession in metro fares for students being key issues.

NSUI is also focusing on the security and safety of women and students from the North East. They too have been very vocal about their opposition to CBCS and are likely to treat it as important fighting ground. They plan on arranging for more hostels for students, and are said to be trying for feeder buses to Metro stations.

AISA, which participated in the last election, but remains a new entrant compared to the others also has a similar agenda with women’s safety and hostel accommodation a key concern. They also want to work for better infrastructure within colleges.

CYSS, the debutante in this election, takes a departure from these existing ideas. They have issued a ‘charter of demands‘. Voicing ideas similar to their parent wing, they also want Wi-Fi facilities for free in the University, terming it the ‘Right to free Wi-Fi’. They also are trying for ‘Right to Income’ which entails bringing in employment avenues through job fairs.

What The Agendas Mean For Students

A look at the main points in the agendas highlight that hostel accommodation and women’s security remains a priority for all parties. Another important concern for all the parties is the issue of safety for North Eastern students. The problems that arise with the points pertaining to this issue is that focusing on North East as a part of India that specifically needs protection further alienates them. What could be done instead is maybe ensure that there is no discrimination against students on the basis of ethnicity. This way it is a more inclusive manner of safeguarding the interests of students.

Since most colleges do offer free Wi-Fi in their campuses, CYSS’s promise remains unclear. The points pertaining to travel if implemented effectively by any of the parties could also be quite helpful to the student community. The opposition to CBCS by both NSUI and AISA are an important strategy for the elections. A very similar strategy was adopted by ABVP earlier, when it won on the premise of revoking FYUP, which they did play an important role in (whether helpful or not is a debatable matter).
ABVP would be fighting to retain their position while NSUI is trying to make a comeback. CYSS is hoping to pull off what AAP did in the state elections. AISA, which has been very powerful in JNUSU is aspiring to get a strong hold in the University of Delhi as well. Who among these would make it to the new union would only be known after this week.

This is a part of YKA’s focused coverage of the 2015 student union elections in Delhi University and Jawaharlal Nehru University. To know more about it, click here.

Tweet your comments, feedback and opinions on the election with #DelhiStudentsVote. We’ll make sure your voice doesn’t go unheard.

You must be to comment.

More from Azra Qaisar

Similar Posts

By ASHUTOSH RABINDRA

By Mrittunjoy Guha Majumdar

By Jagannath Jaggu

Wondering what to write about?

Here are some topics to get you started

Share your details to download the report.









We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

Share your details to download the report.









We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

Share your details to download the report.









We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on Change.org has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

Sign up for the Youth Ki Awaaz Prime Ministerial Brief below