Unlike the campaigns of previous years which focused on international and national issues, the AISA campaign this year addressed issues of scholarships, hostel facilities, and gender-based discrimination on campus, which "seemed to have done the trick".
Akbar Chaudhary was elected president of the JNUSU, Anubhuti Agnes the vice president, Sandeep Saurav the general secretary and Sarfaraz Hamid the joint secretary.
The results were declared Monday after votes were counted over three days. A total of 4,589 votes were polled.
Chaudhary, studying for a doctorate in philosophy, polled 1,977 votes, defeating Ishan Anand of the Democratic Students Federation (DSF) by 1,327 votes.
Agnes, pursuing an M.Phil peogramme in history, got 1,966 votes, defeating the DSF's Zeeshan Ali by 1,052 votes.
Saurav, from the School of Languages, polled 1,657 votes, beating National Students Union of India (NSUI) candidate Caroline Maninee by 953 votes.
Hamid, a French Masters' student, polled 1,705 votes, narrowly defeating the DSF's Sonam Goyal by 59 votes.
The major battle was between the AISA -- which also won three posts barring that of the president in 2012 -- and the DSF, a breakaway group from the Students' Federation of India (SFI).
"The students have recognised our efforts. In the last couple of months, we took up several issues like increasing the amount of scholarship from Rs.200 to Rs.500 along with mess and hostel accommodation issues," Chaudhary told IANS, adding, "All these contributed to our big win."
Agnes told IANS: "Our initiative now is to make JNU a world class research university."
Manimee, who hails from Arunachal Pradesh, told IANS: "Though we lost, it is a great start for NSUI. In spite of the negative campaign against the NSUI, we could manage such a large number of votes."
DSF leaders attributed their loss to the lack of awareness about their ideology.
"This is what made the difference," said Ishan Anand, who contested for the president's post.
Jubilant AISA candidates took out a rally on the campus after the results were declared.
The Students Federation of India - affiliated to the Communist Party of India-Marxist which once had a tenacious grip over campus politics here - has been faring poorly for the past few years.
"In the past two months, CPI-M took many anti-Left moves and decisions, which was never appreciated in JNU. As the whole politics in JNU is core Left-based, voters are never going to vote for such parties who are not stable ideologically and play to the gallery," Ishan Anand told IANS.
But SFI's all-India secretary Arjun Sen Gupta described the election result as its revival, citing the "tremendous" increase in the number of votes in their favour.
--IANS (Posted on 16-09-2013)