DUSU polls: SC asks DU to respond to researchers' plea
The Supreme Court has given the Delhi University the last opportunity to respond to a plea that research scholars be also allowed to contest and represent students in student union polls in the varsity. A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justice AM Khanvilker directed authorities, including the DU and the Delhi University Students Union, to file their replies by May 5.
Research scholars cannot be discriminated without any intelligible basis: Petitoner
The SC bench asked the authorities to file their replies on the petition of Abhishek Verma, a research scholar (Ph.D.) in the Department of Chemistry. "Why research scholars who admittedly are 'students' of the university cannot become members/affiliate of the students' union? The research scholars (Ph.D.) cannot be discriminated without any intelligible basis," said the petitioner in his petition.
DUSU constitution's provisions are in contravention of the Lyngdoh committee
"Provisions of the constitution of DUSU are in clear contravention of the recommendation of the Lyngdoh committee approved by the SC," the petition says. "The age limit for participating in the DUSU polls for research scholars stipulated in the DUSU constitution is 25 years as against the age of 28 years recommended by the Lyngdoh Committee and accepted by the apex court," it added.
Petitioner had earlier filed writ petition before the Delhi HC
The petition added that even otherwise, there was no provision in the Constitution of the DUSU which prohibited research scholars from getting affiliated to DUSU. The petitioner had earlier filed a writ petition before the Delhi High Court seeking implementation of recommendations of the Lyngdoh Committee to enable eligible research scholars to participate in DUSU elections and become its members.
Writ petition dismissed by the Delhi HC
The Delhi HC's single bench and later a division bench dismissed the petition, after which an appeal was filed before the SC. The petition claimed that most of the central and state universities across India allow research scholars to participate in elections, unlike Delhi University.