Published: 17th August 2018
Why the NSUI is fighting to keep the Aero India show in Bengaluru
Keerti Ganesh, the general secretary of the NSUI talks about their latest campaign to ensure the Aero India show stays in Bengaluru and their future plans
The Karnataka wing of the National Students' Union of India was established in the 1970's but the group hasn't really been in the limelight too much in the last many years. Save for a few issues where they've protested for things like free student bus passes, the VTU evaluation system and a critical year back system for engineering students. Now they're out on the streets again to protest against the possible shifting of Aero India show 2018 from Bengaluru's Yelahanka Air Force station to Lucknow's Bakshi Ka Talab. The Aero India show has been conducted in Bengaluru since 1996 and this new suggestion has ruffled a lot of feathers and the NSUI has taken umbrage.
Two days ago, the NSUI members held a signature campaign and on Thursday they also protested outside Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman's office. Keerti Ganesh N G, the general secretary of the Karnataka state wing's NSUI and a final year law student at Sheshadripuram college, Bengaluru spoke to us about the campaign to keep the Aero India show in Bengaluru, about the NSUI's plan to be more visible in the state's politics and how they're making secularism one of their primary agendas.
Why is it important for the NSUI to protest against the shifting of the Aero India show?
It is sad news for our state that the Defence Ministry has decided to shift the Aero India show from Bengaluru to Lucknow. The show has been running in our city for the past 20 years and Bengaluru has been the IT capital and it is also a hub for aerospace industries like BEML, BEL etc. Nirmala Sitharaman, the Defence Minister is also an elected Rajya Sabha member from Karnataka. Just to gain political mileage in other states, they should not be shifting the show. We have also got more than 5,000 signatures from students of various colleges to show that the idea has to be dropped.
How active has the Karnataka wing of NSUI been all these years when it comes to educational policies?
According to the NSUI chart, the Karnataka wing has been very active for the past four years. Though there was a Congress-led government during the PU question paper leak controversy, we supported students and worked in favor of them. We also staged four days of hunger protest in 2017 against the VTU when they implemented a year back system. The year back policy stated that if the engineering students failed in the first semester, then they would not be able to attend classes in the third semester even though they had passed all subjects in the second semester. They had already announced the results very late and students would have suffered. By bringing in more pressure, we made sure that they gave relaxation to the students of at least one particular year. In the coming years too, we have more plans to strengthen the students union in various colleges so they fight for good causes.