The new office-bearers of the Delhi University Students’ Union might be thumping their chests with the recent victory, but the Delhi High Court has raised serious doubts over their leadership qualities looking at the defacement caused across Delhi in the name of poll campaigning.
On Wednesday, a bench headed by Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal asked DUSU’s newly-elected president NSUI’s Rocky Tuseer whether such defacement was a sign of future leadership.
Kunal Sehrawat, DUSU vice-president and a student of Law, also came in for criticism from the bench.
"You are a law faculty student and expected to follow law. Is this the leadership you will provide? During election you all have defaced public properties, used spray paints, defaced metro stations. Who will clean it? The whole university comes to a standstill during elections," the bench said, indicating that the candidates may have to bear the cost of cleaning all the defaced public properties.
The bench brought the attention of all candidates who appeared before court to the provision which makes defacement punishable with 10-year imprisonment.
Justice Mittal asked Sehrawat to work out an action plan to clean Delhi of the defacement caused during DUSU polls.
He sought more time to come up with an action plan and was granted time till October 16.
“We also direct that a proposal shall be placed before the next date regarding the manner in which DUSU elections shall be conducted in future and compliance of the guidelines,” it told the varsity.
The bench made it clear that it wanted a clean Diwali.
"It is not a joke. This is violence against the city and its people. We shall have a clean Diwali. Come back in a week and show us a clean Delhi University," the bench directed.
The candidates who appeared before the bench in pursuance of its show cause notices were Rocky Tuseer, Ankit Basoya, Shakti Singh, Meenakshi Meena, Mehul Parashar, Shauryaveer Singh, Avinash Yadav and Kunal Sehrawat.
Fifteen other candidates could not be served and were issued notices afresh.
The bench has been hearing a petition filed by advocate Prashant Manchanda against the defacement of public properties like flyovers, metro stations etc caused in the name of campaigning for DUSU polls.
While on his petition, the court had earlier ordered strict check on defacement, on Wednesday, he told the court how its orders were being defied with congratulatory messages scarring Delhi.
On Wednesday, he told the court, “There has been a gross defiance of the order of this Court now in the form of felicitating messages and congratulatory messages over the public properties, including the permanent scar the present elections have caused to the said properties.”