Delhi’s Jamia Millia Islamia University plans to have a election for a Jamia Student Council (JSC) in 2017. It is to be noted that this university has not held student union elections since 2006 over claims by the authority that student representatives had started interfering in administrative work.
As per norms, only the class representatives (CR) can contest for the main offices in the council such as president, vice-president, general secretary etc. Only CRs are alllowed to vote in this election. Notably, there are only two CR in every department. The first one is selected through a secret ballot and the other is the topper of the class.
The students are heavily criticizing the administration’s move. Not only are they calling it ‘dummy union’ but also opposing it’s biase. The structure of student union in other universities in Delhi is completly contradictory from what Jamia administration proposes to achieve. Student union in other universities are independent bodies considering that the Vice-Chancellor holds the highest power along with other university authority bodies. Also, the post of VP in the Jamia Student Council will be a female student.
A memorandum has been drafted by a delegation of activist from Left-leaning AISA and AISF, to AAP-backed CYSS and even the Congress’ NSUI, to the V-C Tuesday with signatures of 3,500 students.
“This Students’ Council is unconstitutional, and against the democratic right of approximately 17,000 students of the university. We the students of JMI, from time to time, have been requesting the administration to restore students’ union, which would work as a competent body to address the grievances of the students’ fraternity. But keeping our request aside, the administration has come up with a puppet and incompetent form of body,” said the memorandum.
DSW Tasneem Meenai said, “The Constitution of JSC was a university regulation, approved by the Executive Council. However, since students had some grievances, we have put the elections on hold. We will be legally vetting the case, and find out what can be done on student representation.”