NSUI demands increase in election expenditure budget in student union polls

NEW DELHI: The National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) on Monday demanded an independent election commission and a revision in the budget for elections in student union polls in universities stating that the current limit of Rs. 5,000 is “too little and impractical”.

“It has been 11 years since the budget limit was set as per Lyngdoh Committee(2006). Since then, the number of students have increased and so much has changed… It is not feasible to run campaign in this amount… Moreover, there are no guidelines for social media campaign. We want the expenditure limit to be revised,” the NSUI National President Fairoz Khan, said.

Mr. Khan also proposed for the establishing of an independent election commission at the national level which will work under the supervision of the Election Commission of India.

By March 2017, a convention will be held where the proposals will be made open for deliberations by other student parties, he said.

“We are planning to do a massive convention in which about 50,000 students will participate. We will invite other parties also for their say in the finalising of resolution. After that it will be presented to the members of Parliament who may propose it in the House,” Mr. Khan said.

A students court, a grievance redressal cell that is “free from the intervention of the university”, a National Students Rights Commission and use of ballot paper instead of Electronic Voting Machines were also among its demands.

The party also proposed online voting as an option, if not ballot paper, to “increase the voting percentage” and reduce the incidents of violence during polling.

A reduction in age for voting and contesting in polls was also proposed by the student leader, who demanded that voting age should be brought down to 16 from 18 and that for contending to be fixed at 18.