No, ABVP Didn’t Win CUSAT Student Election By a ‘Huge Majority’

The claim is exaggerated as the ABVP lost all but one of the seats which went to polls.

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Misleading claims of ABVP winning student elections in CUSAT have gone viral.
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With the political rivalry between left- and right-wing student bodies, viral fake news is bound to exist. The Quint came across one such post on social media.

CLAIM

A post on Facebook page NAMO claims that the RSS-affiliated student body Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) has won the student body election at Kochi University by a huge majority, defeating the CPI(M)’s student body Students’ Federation of India (SFI).

The post also suggests that the result is proof of the ‘Modi wave’ now reaching Kerala.

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Posted by NAMO on Tuesday, February 12, 2019

TRUE OR FALSE

The claim is exaggerated. The Quint found out that the ABVP lost all but one of the seats which went to polls.

WHAT WE FOUND OUT

The post on NAMO’s Facebook page had been shared more than 960 times by the time this article was written.

To put the facts straight, there exists no university by the name ‘Kochi University’. However, the Cochin University of Science and Technology (CUSAT) is colloquially referred to as Kochi University.

The Quint reached out to student leaders of SFI and ABVP in CUSAT to get the details of results of the student body elections, declared on 8 February.

Prajul KV of the SFI and Abhishek M of the ABVP confirmed that CUSAT student body elections are held in the ‘Single Transferable Vote’ system – the process used to elect Rajya Sabha members.

Under this system, voters number a list of candidates. Their favourite is chosen as number one, their second favourite as number two, and so on. To get elected, a candidate needs a set amount of votes, known as the quota.

The people counting the votes work out the quota based on the number of vacancies and the number of votes cast.

Each voter has one vote. Once the counting has finished, any candidate who has more ‘number ones’ than the quota is elected. But, rather than ignore extra votes a candidate received after the amount they need to win, these votes move to each voter’s second-favourite candidate.

The CUSAT student body employs this system to elect seven student representatives to the Senate and two student representatives to the Academic Council, Prajul said while speaking to The Quint.

As far as the overall results are concerned, the SFI won three out of the seven Senate seats, Kerala Students’ Union (KSU) – a Congress backed union – bagged two of the seats, while ABVP won just one of them.

The SFI and KSU are tied on one Senate seat. The KSU has gone to the High Court asking for a recounting for this seat.

In the Academic Council election, the SFI won both seats, bagging one of them unopposed.

(The Quint is available on Telegram. For handpicked stories every day, subscribe to us on Telegram)

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