Over the past few years, the Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU) election has been losing its transparency and credibility. A number of instances of unfair polling, wrong nomination cancellation and allegations of political pressure have led to numerous problems for the candidates.
The latest press conference of NSUI brought out such cases. In the year 2017-18, Avinash Yadav the Joint Secretary candidate of NSUI faced issue during counting of votes. ln the beginning, he was ahead in the number of votes gained but later that declined leading to confusion and substantive allegations of influence political pressure were made. The Presidential candidate of NSUI, Rocky Tuseed‘s nomination was first cancelled by the committee but later was permitted to contest elections as per the orders of the High Court. As a result, he got the least number of days for campaigning than other candidates making it unfair for him.
NSUI has demanded certain provisions to be made to combat these issues and lend credibility to DUSU elections.
TIMINGS FOR VOTING
The time duration for voting should be increased for the convenience of students living far off. Morning shift should take place from 8am- 1pm while the evening shift should take place from 2pm- 7pm, which will result in a greater turnout of voters.ID cards should be issued to students ahead of elections, otherwise government issued ID proofs along with admission/fee slip should be accepted.
The first generations EVMs are still used in DUSU elections. Newer ones should be installed to avoid tampering with them. A mock drill of EVMs should be carried out to check their functioning and familiarize students with voting process. CCTV Cameras should be placed on EVMs for crosschecking in case of allegations of false voting. Even a provision for recounting of votes should be made.
USE Of VVPAT MACHINES
Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail (WPAT) machines should be used. These are independent verification printer machines attached to EVMs and enable voters to see for themselves whether their vote has gone to the right candidate.
A polling agent should be appointed for each candidate to oversee the voting process.The EVM wise vote counting should take place in front of polling agents to ensure transparency.
ENSURING SECURITY OF STUDENTS
More female constables should be deployed in campus during the elections to ensure security of female students. Excessive barricades and police personnel should be avoided as it frightens students and deters them from voting.