New Delhi: Over 43 percent students exercised their franchise Friday in the keenly contested Delhi University Students' Union (DUSU) polls which were dominated this year by issues such as rollback of CBCS, security, transport and accommodation problems faced by varsity students.
Meanwhile, the students council elections also took place in 42 colleges where Congress-affiliated National Students Union of India (NSUI) won the five-member panels in 18 colleges while the BJP's youth wing Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parsihad (ABVP) emerged victorious at 13 colleges.
Both the parties won different seats in remaining colleges.
While DUSU is the representative body of the students from most colleges and faculties of the varsity, colleges have their individual students' councils.
AAP's student wing Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS), which is making its debut at the DUSU polls, did not nominate any candidates for the council elections at colleges.
The Chief Election Officer for DUSU elections, D S Rawat, said the voting went off peacefully with 44 per cent of students casting their vote in the morning leg of polls.
"The polling which was conducted in two phases went off smoothly. The maximum turnout of 91 per cent was recorded at the Ayurvedic and Unani Tibbia College and the minimum was in Shahid Bhagat Singh evening college and Department of Buddhist Studies at 21 per cent," he said.
"Sri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC) reported the highest turnout of 70 per cent at a campus college while the minimum was at Khalsa college at 27 per cent," he added.
No technical glitches in the EVMs were reported during the first phase.
While 44 per cent polling was recorded in the morning leg of polls, the turnout in the evening phase was relatively low, Rawat said, adding that the counting of votes will be taken up tomorrow after which the results will be declared.
"The university had deployed 23 observers who visited the 50 centres where the polling took place in teams of two to check violations of code of conduct.
"DU administration had also installed CCTV cameras besides hiring commercial videographers to record election activities to ensure free and fair polling," Rawat said.
According to Deputy Commissioner of Police (North Delhi) Madhur Verma, the polling went off peacefully and no incidents of violence were reported.
"A huge contingent of police was deployed at various polling centres of the university to ensure that no untoward incident takes place.
"The movement of vehicles was also restricted on Chatra Marg in North Campus to avoid any chaos or discomfort to students. The polling was peaceful," he said.
Meanwhile, Aam Aadmi Party MLA Sanjeev Jha and two other party supporters were briefly detained for alleged breach of code of conduct during the polls. They were released within half-an-hour.
A total of 1,35,298 voters were eligible to cast vote in the DUSU polls for the four crucial posts -- the President, Vice President, Secretary and Joint Secretary.
Testing their electoral fortunes are nine candidates for the post of President, eight each for the post of Vice President and Joint Secretary and 10 nominees for the post of Secretary.
The students, who turned up to cast their vote, seemed excited about participating in the student polls.
The DUSU polls have been keenly contested over decades and have also been a stepping stone to party politics for some prominent leaders.
Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, senior Congress leader Ajay Maken, Delhi BJP president Satish Upadhyay, BJP leader Vijay Goel are among the many national and state-level politicians who began their political career at DUSU.
While the political slug-fest at DU has over the decades been between Congress affiliated National Students' Union of India (NSUI) and BJP's youth wing Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), buoyed by its victory in the Assembly polls, the AAP's students' wing, the Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS), has entered the fray this year, giving a tough fight to them.
Last year, ABVP had swept the DUSU polls trouncing NSUI to bag all the four positions.