Published: 29th September 2020
I have a mobile phone. That's good enough: Meet SFI's Anila Raju, the new Students' Union Chairperson of Kerala University
An MCom student of TKMM College Nangiarkulangara, she assumed the position on September 22 and her take on all things has been refreshing
An abrupt switch of classes from offline to online was not quite convenient for students across many universities in the country, which include the University of Delhi, Jawaharlal Nehru University and the University of Hyderabad. However, the new Students' Union Chairperson of the University of Kerala says that the shift was rather seamless for the students in her university. "The government and authorities took the utmost care to ensure that the digital divide was bridged successfully," says Anila Raju of SFI, who assumed the position on September 22.
While this is surprising and refreshing coming from a student unionist from the left, there was more. "There were students who had an issue with the mobile networks or data. But timely intervention helped us tackle that," she says. The election for the remaining posts of the Student' Union is to be held on September 30 but Anila was elected unanimously. A topper since her school time, Anila has been active in student politics since Class XI. "My parents are both social activists. My mother was the Panchayat President a decade back. So, they never opposed my entry into politics. However, they were always particular that I score well in my subjects," she says. She is currently pursuing her MCom from TKMM College Nangiarkulangara.
A COVID volunteer, Anila attends her classes online inside her small temporary house, in the middle of a paddy field. However, she has no complaints. "I have a mobile phone. That is good enough for me to attend my classes," she says. However, in front of her is the land marked to build a new house, that the family was allowed under a government scheme. "It's a waterlogged area and getting the building materials here is a hassle. The transportation itself will take a lot of time. There is no proper pathway to come home," she laments.
There are challenges aplenty in front of her. For instance, the University College Thiruvananthapuram, which was controversial for alleged hooliganism, comes under KU. Anila was quite optimistic about tackling it. "SFI never supported hooliganism. However, if issues arise, we will take proper action with much deliberation," she says.