AISA-SFI alliance in DU to fight right-wing terror

AISA-SFI alliance in DU to fight right-wing terror

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Balan Nair started this petition to All India Students Association and

The democratic character of the Delhi University Students' Union elections has eroded away in the last few years. Money and muscle power has constantly triumphed (electorally at least) over the interests of general welfare of the students with organisations like ABVP and NSUI employing undemocratic methods in order to win the elections.

On top of this, there has been an ideological war going on in Delhi University since the BJP came to power in the centre. Just like every other educational space in the country, Delhi University too has slowly been saffronised from all sides. The entend to which fascist narratives of the Sangh have been normalised in DU has been reflected in the recent incident of the ABVP placing a statue of V. D. Savarkar at Arts Faculty.

However the advances made by the Sangh into the university spaces will not make me subscribe to an attitude of defeatism. This is because hope exists in the form of Leftist/Ambedkarite organisations that have been putting up a tough fight in the campus. Every joint protest on campus, where dozens of Left/Ambedkarite organisations come together and fight together, fuels this hope.

Despite this solidarity seen between Left/Ambedkarite organisations in protests, it is a depressing sight that recurres every year. When the DUSU elections approach, these organisations and their solidarity seem to fracture. The most concerning of this is the consistent lack of an electoral alliance between the two biggest left organisations on campus, SFI and AISA.

Several questions come to my mind regarding this particular case of non-alliance. One, if the two organizations can see eye to eye on practically all issues that happen on campus and do joint protests, then why not extend this alliance electorally as well? Two, if an alliance between the two organizations can be worked out (to great success) in JNU just a few kilometers away, why can't the same be done in DU? Clearly, if SFI and AISA can stand together in one major university and not in another, what is keeping them from being in an alliance has less to do with ideological differences and more to do with petty campus politics. The fact that it is not an ideological difference that is standing in the way of the alliance was made clear when AISA aligned with CYSS, an organization barely seen on campus after the elections, and doesn't participate in any of the students' struggles. Three, in these dark times when the very identity and character of the university and the country is looming under the shadow of fascism, is there absolutely no way to set aside the differences between the two organizations and find some common ground to contest together?

This year's DUSU election dates have been announced for the 12th of September and still to this day we have yet to see any signs of an electoral alliance between SFI and AISA. Will SFI and AISA that have worked together in so many struggles over the last year, still refuse to stand together in the elections?

(Taken from a student's open letter to AISA-SFI Delhi University leadership)

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