In the upcoming Students’ Union elections in the University of Hyderabad, the Left, Tribal, Muslim and Ambedkarite student organisations have joined hands into a grand alliance to lead a combined electoral battle. Representing the alliance, Sreerag Poickadan (PhD Regional studies), has filed his nomination for the President’s post and will be contesting against K. Palsaniya (PhD History) from ABVP-OBCA and Anju (MA Sociology) from NSUI. The polling will commence on September 21 and the results will be declared the next day.
The student organisations - Students Federation of India (SFI), Tribal Students Forum (TSF), Dalit Students Union (DSU), Ambedkar Students Association (ASA), Muslim Student Federation (MSF) and Telangana Vidyarthi Vedika (TVV) have grouped into an ‘Alliance for Social Justice’ with the common purpose of defeating the RSS-affiliated Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) in the election, whereas the OBC Association has allied with ABVP. NSUI has filed candidate only for the President post.
Speaking to Newsclick, Sai Kumar Yamarthi Secretary SFI-UoH unit said that as the university is becoming exceptionally authoritarian with a wide range of anti-student policies, it is only the unity among left and marginalised sections of the people that can save the campus democracy.
“With increasing attack on democratic spaces both within the campus and the country at large, this alliance is mainly intended to send a stronger message of unity against the ruling BJP’s right-wing politics,” he said.
“This alliance for social justice is to build a united movement for furthering the interests of oppressed sections of people against right-wing fascist policies”, he said.
Munna Sannaki, ASA President, alleged that ABVP in the footsteps of RSS and BJP has been involved in creating communal conflicts in the universities. Speaking to Newsclick, he said, “ABVP inside the campus has always been a political tool in the hands of university administration and hence this alliance aims not only to defeat ABVP but also to bring changes in campus politics wherein all SC, ST, OBC, minorities and progressive students fight unitedly against fascist forces”.
The ABVP-OBCA is carrying out their campaign with the slogan ‘From illusions to solutions. From propaganda to agenda’.
Ajmal S. Rasaq, a PhD Scholar from the University opined that in the context of elections, University of Hyderabad is the model to emulate and replicate at the grand stage. He said “SFI along with its old allies joining hands with ASA is not just an electoral adjustment to defeat ABVP. In fact, this is the right step to build a credible movement against socially oppressive and exploitative Indian setup.”
The candidates representing the Alliance for Social Justice are for Vice President: Lunavath Naresh (MPH Public Health), General Secretary: Arif Ahammed (Ph.D. Indian Diaspora), Joint Secretary: Muhammed Ashique N.P (M.A Political Science), Sports Secretary: Lolam Sravan Kumar (M.A Political Science), Cultural Secretary: Gundeti Abhishek (M.A Anthropology), GSCASH (Integrated): Tinanjali Dam (IMA Economics), GSCASH (P.G): Charu Nivedha R. (M.A Sociology).
The candidates of ABVP-OBCA panel are: for Vice -President: Apoorv Jain. (Mtech), General Secretary: Kiran Kumar.K (PhD. Economics), Joint Secretary: Maloth Pooja Rani. (IMA. ECONOMICS), Cultural Secretary: Aarti N Nagpal. (PhD. Psychology), Sports Secretary: Rupesh Ranjan. (M.A. Political Science), GS CASH (P.G): Neha Rani Patel (M.A. Communication), GS CASH (Integrated): P. Navya(IMA) Anthropology
In the previous year's elections, S Kuldeep Singh Nagi of SFI and its allies won the presidential post by securing 1,406 votes against Gopi Krishna of AVBP-OBCA who secured 1,354 votes. Vijay Kumar Pedapudi of ASA had secured 950 votes.