August 28, 2016 2:03:24 am
In the run-up to the student union elections of Maharaja Sayajirao University (MSU) on September 3, the campus is witnessing a heated contest between NSUI and ABVP. The NSUI has filed a complaint with the returning officer, seeking the disqualification of an independent candidate, Priyanka Patel, who is a namesake of the NSUI’s candidate for the post of vice-president. The NSUI claims that the candidate has been backed by bitter rivals ABVP as a “dummy” to eat into the votes of NSUI’s Priyanka.
The University is contemplating a decision on the contentious candidature of Priyanka Patel, a student of the Civil Engineering department in MSU, whose form bears a seemingly fake address. While the NSUI blames the ABVP for trying to sabotage its chances, the Congress student union is also demanding that the form be rejected immediately. Rutvij Joshi, in-charge of elections for NSUI, said, “The form of this dummy Priyanka Patel bears an address of a Waghodia residence. When we checked the address, it turned out to be fake. It is a ground for disqualification of the form, but the returning officer and the vice-chancellor are not ready to take the imperative step. We do not want to file a case in court against the university as we want the election to happen after a gap of three years. But we are being compelled to contemplate legal action.”
Returning Officer Virendra Singh Khair said that the contentious form had been sealed and a decision would be taken on Monday — a time lag that has not gone down too well with the NSUI. Khair said, “The address is not supposed to be verified by us as it is signed by the Dean of the Faculty. We have to believe the address that the candidate has given. They sign a declaration that their form can be rejected if any wrong information is provided. The form has been sealed and a decision will be taken on Monday.”
Khair added that when he spoke to the candidate in question, she told him that she had not filled her own form. Khair said, “When I called her up while the NSUI was filing the complaint, the candidate expressed ignorance about the address mentioned in her form as she had only signed the form and taken someone’s help to fill it up. We have asked her to submit a written explanation in the matter in order to take a decision on Monday.”
The NSUI is blaming the election officers for playing a trick. Joshi said, “We have been pressing them to take an immediate decision as providing a fake address is a ground for disqualification. However, they are pushing the matter on to Monday in such an important case. We have warned the vice-chancellor that we should not be handed out an excuse that the ballot papers have been printed by Monday, which will ensure that the dummy candidate remains in the fray. It will eat into almost 1,500 votes of our party.”
The student union elections for university general secretary and vice-president will be held on September 3.
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