Poll blow to JNU cell

Delhi High Court on Monday stayed a unanimous decision that Jawaharlal Nehru University's grievance redress cell had taken to cancel the candidature of the NSUI nominee for students' union president in the polls scheduled for September 14.

By Pheroze L. Vincent
  • Published 11.09.18
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Picture by Prem Singh

New Delhi: Delhi High Court on Monday stayed a unanimous decision that Jawaharlal Nehru University's grievance redress cell had taken to cancel the candidature of the NSUI nominee for students' union president in the polls scheduled for September 14.

The NSUI, the Congress's student wing, is a minor player in the Left-dominated union.

Justice Siddharth Mridul stayed till November 27 the operation of a letter that NSUI nominee Vikas Yadav had been handed last Friday by the grievance redress cell (GRC), the appellate body for student poll disputes.

Yadav had earlier this year been fined for blocking a road and frying fritters in the open to protest against compulsory attendance, seat cuts and dilution of reservation benefits.

The high court had in July stayed "coercive action" against Yadav, whose appeal is yet to be decided by the varsity's chief proctor. But the GRC considered the fine a punishment for indiscipline - a disqualification for contestants under the Lyngdoh committee guidelines.

On Friday, Yadav got an email asking him to appear before the GRC. When he reached, he was handed a copy of a letter from GRC member secretary Deepak Arya to JNUSU Election Committee chairman Himanshu Kulshrestha. The letter said the "GRC has unanimously decided that the candidature of Mr Vikas Yadav be cancelled".

Yadav moved the court where senior advocate Salman Khurshid assisted by Nikhil Bhalla argued for him.

Justice Mridul, who sent notices to Arya and chief proctor Kaushal Sharma, said: "Don't you have to tell him how he has fallen foul of the Lyngdoh committee recommendations...? What will he respond to...? If you (JNU) can send him a showcause notice and pass an order on the same day (September 7), why can't you determine his appeal?" PTI reported.

Later in the day, the GRC formally withdrew its observations.# The NSUI said the verdict was "a moral victory for JNU students".