Published: 07th September 2019
JNUSU elections: Amidst high drama, Election Commission to restart counting votes
After a Delhi High Court order restrained the university from publishing the results, the counting was stopped for almost 11 hours
After an 11-hour hold, the counting officers will now resume counting of the 2019 JNUSU election votes. The Chief Election Commissioner Shashank Patel, in a press release, said, "Because a consensus could not be reached after so many hours, Election Commission has decided to go ahead and resume the counting process with the declaration of trends, but the final results will be put on hold."
The polls had ended at 5.30 pm on September 6 and the counting was supposed to begin at 9 pm the same day, but that was when a Delhi High Court ruling restrained the varsity from releasing the results until September 17.
Even though the court order did not anywhere ask the university to stop counting the votes, the students had alleged that the administration, through the Grievance Redressal Cell had interfered in the process and has stopped the counting. "Nowhere in the court order does it say that the counting has to be stopped. It only talks about keeping the results on hold," says the outgoing JNUSU President N Sai Balaji. "Since yesterday, Dean of Students Umesh Kadam has been interfering in the counting process. All the organisations, (except ABVP) asked the counting officers to restart the counting process and submit the result, but not declare it until September 17," he says.
He also said that the Kadam threatened to call the CRPF when the students said that they did not want any interference of the GRC in the election process. "Last year, during the elections the ABVP stalled the counting and tried to burn the ballot boxes. Umesh Kadam saw this and refused to take any action against those students," says Balaji. "The JNU Vice-Chancellor knows that the ABVP is incompetent, so he is doing everything to make sure that the election, polling and counting are interfered with," he adds.