A lot of us are content that the elections to SUC this time donít involve much contestation and are going smoothly. And this line of thought is convenient. My intention, however, is to take a step back and pursue a critical examination of the whole affair of Election 2017. Because there is always something better to strive for.
The President and the General Secretary are going to be unanimous winners this year. They are the two most important posts that determine the direction of our campus for the coming one year. Whether one is fit or not fit for the post is not the question here. The concern ought to be if this sets a bad precedent for the coming years. And in my view, it does. Contestation is always a sign of a healthy democracy. Else, there are high chances that it may lead to nepotism and aspirers being discouraged from contesting. An interesting thing to note is the inverse relation between the hierarchy of a post and the number of students. with 9 students standing this time for 5 seats in the Student Mess Council. *shrugs*
There could be many reasons for such a phenomenon, including lower proportion of people being active in leadership roles on campus, low self-esteem among some or even nepotism. One reason I wish to point out is our fetish with candidate credentials. Of course, credentials give us an idea of the potential. But what I am saying is you can be a good post holder and do not have a heap of credentials. Because, we have seen students in the past with very many credentials and yet were not good at leading. All I say is that credentials should not be treated as ďtheĒ factor for being a position holder.
Another reason I noticed is the existing post bearers of bodies across the campus being influential in the election in ways more than one. Irrespective of all the strict election guidelines, this always happens. How could this be dealt with? For one, ending their term with the SUC itself. That way, a significant part of their leverage is lost.
And lastly, the larger question of why a large proportion of campus folks stays away from taking up leadership positions. Probably because they think it might affect their grades. But this is a fallacy. Leadership and social skills are as much important as being competent in technical stuff. Probably we donít know the duties of President or Gen Sec and what goes inside and outside after you hold a post or probably we are naive, it is something to think of.