Daijiworld Media Network - Udupi (SP)
Udupi, Feb 13: Rashmi Samant, a native of Manipal and past student of Manipal Institute of Technology (MIT), Manipal, has been elected as the president of the prestigious Oxford University Student Union.
Rashmi, who took over as the president of the union on February 11 this year, happens to be the first-ever Indian woman to be elevated to this post.
Rashmi garnered much more votes than what her three opponents secured. In the election, Samant got votes in excess of the combined votes mustered by the other three contestants in the race.
The election saw 4,881 students cast 36,405 votes, an SU record as it was the highest voter turnout ever. Samant received 1,966 of the 3,708 votes for the position of president, more than all the other candidates combined, in a landslide victory.
Rashmi happens to be an MSc degree student at Linacre College, Oxford University. She is the daughter of Vatsala Samant and Dinesh Samant. She got her initial education at Manipal and Udupi and secured her mechanical engineering degree (2016-20) from MIT. She was known for her leadership skills and ebullience. When studying at MIT, she had functioned as the technical secretary of the students' council. She had taken the lead in starting several creative activities in the council. She also had organized Manipal Hackathon towards providing modern digital solutions to social challenges.
Dinesh Samant from Shivapady, Manipal, expressed happiness at his daughter's achievement. He said that Rashmi came out victorious in the student union election for the post of the president, the result of which was announced on Thursday night. He pointed out that the lead with which Rashmi was elected was the highest in the history of Oxford University.
According to her manifesto, Samant intends to lobby the University and Conference of Colleges to remove all statues proven to be imperialist, including Christopher Codrington’s. She stated that she will also push for residency requirements to be waived until the World Health Organisation declares the end of the pandemic. A lobby to increase funding for the mental health strategy and work to convince the Conference of Colleges to divest from fossil fuels as soon as possible.
Officials of MAHE, the director, MIT and the staff members of the institute have expressed immense pride over Rashmi’s achievement and wish her all the success in her role as the President of Oxford SU.