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Students’ Council GBM, 18th May 2010 : A report

The Soapbox event on the 18th of May, 2010 was preceded by the GBM of the Students’ Council 2009-2010. The following is a report on the proceedings of the same.

The first point on the agenda for the evening was the amendment of SC bylaws. The bylaws of the Students Council were amended during the GBM with the approval of the students present.

As per the existing bylaws, posts in the Students Council can be held only by students whose student registrations with the Institute are current and valid.

In case of the Chairman’s post becoming vacant, the Gen Secretary assumes that post and a nominee takes up the post of the Gen Secretary.

In case of both the Chairman and Gen Secretary’s post becoming vacant, then new elections have to be held to both the posts.

Office bearer can refer to SC Chairman or SC Gen Secretary

The new additions to the bylaws are as follows :

  1. In the eventuality of a vacancy arising due to resignation, cancellation of student registration, course completion of an office bearer or any other reason, the candidate who came second in the elections assumes the post, given that he or she has secured atleast half the number of votes as the winner of the elections.
  2. In case of the elections to the said post being unanimous or there being no other candidates with at least half the number of votes, a special meeting of the department representatives to the council will be convened to elect the new office bearer from among themselves. The appointment of the new office bearer will be ratified by the Student Advisor.
  3. If there are no nominations for the post of Secretary – Womens Affairs, the said post will remain vacant for the year. Lady students who are nominated to the Women’s Cell by the Council will be representing, the students on issues concerning them.
  4. The office bearers of the previous Students Council, will continue to remain members of the new Council for a period of three months. Their participation will be in an advisory and non-executive capacity.

Annual Report

This was followed by an annual report on the activities of the SC and its various committees over the last year, presented by Abraham Kurien, the General Secretary of the outgoing SC.

The main achievement of the outgoing SC, he said, was the definition of specific roles for the steering committee.

Academic committee : On the academic front, the open day was conceptualized and organized by the SC, organized Vijyoshi camp as part of KVPY, IISc-AA knowledge exchange program was started. Faculty are now considering a formal TAship program suggested by the SC. Other activites included the laptop drive, introduction of scholarship for foreign national students and suggesting the inclusion of students in the DCC which is being considered by the departments.

Amenities commitee : Amenities-wise, Prakruthi the new restaurant was started, the bicycle drive was started, permission a for new cycle shop has been granted, a new cafeteria for students near gymkhana is to be set up and there are plans for a new tea kiosk near ECE run by Tata Tea.

Communications committee : The communications committee was responsible for all the posters and broadcasts sent out by the SC and for all interactions with Voices, the students’ newsletter.

Cultural committee : In the cultural arena, SC organised 5 shows with SPIC-MACAY last year.

Support network : SC worked with Dr. Nalini from CCS for providing counselling and support for students in need of the same.

Social initiatives committee : The Social initiatives committee supported the Help the Needy program which collected used clothes and similar items from students and distributed them among the poor. The committee also arranged a trip to the flood-affected areas following the ravages of the last monsoons and also raised funds for the people affected by Cyclone Aila.

The SC also joined hands with NGO Hasiru Usiru and the Green Gang to protest against indiscriminate tree-felling, which however was unsuccessful. A blood donation camp was organized (with the help of Sankalp Foundation), as also a eye-donation-registration camp. A talk by Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan, an IAS officer turned MLA from Andhra Pradesh, was organized. Registration of voters from IISc for the BBMP elections was carried out.

SC did not fail to please the fairer sex as it organized screening camps, created waiting areas in girls’ hostel lobbies for parents and organized a self defense camp for women.

Volunteer committee : The iVolunteer program was started wherein a database of volunteers was created which came in handy while organizing various events.

Placement committee : Interaction with companies for placement was improved, and alumni association knowledge exchange program was started.

Voices Bylaws.

Mission Statement:

  • Bringing the Institute related issues to the fore.
  • Highlighting Institute achievements.
  • Analyzing the problems affecting academic community in the institute through investigation and suggest way outs if possible.

Selection Of Team Members:

  • Information about openings has to be communicated to the student community through broadcasts, posters etc.
  • Any IISc student is free to join Voices.

Selecting Editor:

  • One-year term for editor (flexible in exceptional circumstances)
  • In case of extraordinary circumstances, members can unanimously run the selection for the editor again.
  • Voices Team selects the editor by simple majority.
  • There is a provision of Working Editor who would have an interim right and responsibility for a particular Voices issue. The selection of Working Editor is done the same way as the Editor.

Roles and Duties of the Members of Voices:

  • This applies to all members of the Voices team including the editors.
  • Assigning roles and duties to the new entrants is done through interactive meetings.
  • Should contribute to Voices as and when required.
  • Help out in the other functioning of Voices as and when required.
  • Strictly adhere to the basic ethics of journalism.
  • All team members must maintain confidentiality of matters discussed within the team.
  • If a team member misses 5 consecutive team meetings, a show-cause notice will be sent to the team member by the Team and the process for removing the member from the team will be initiated.

Roles And Responsibilities Of Editors:

  • The Editors should ensure the regular publication of Voices with help from all team members.
  • Editor is completely responsible for all material printed in Voices.
  • Voices may not subscribe to views or ideas presented by outside contributions, they are solely their own.
  • Authors submit -> editors review -> return to authors suggesting changes -> authors revise article and make changes -> authors resubmit article.
  • Responsible for content of e-Voices.
  • The editor has to reach a consensus for each editorial decision.
  • The editor won’t have any special privilege in the team other than having the additional responsibility of being the intermediary between the Students’ Council / IISc administration and Voices.
  • Voices Team has the final say in the content of Voices and has complete authority in all other matters.

Guidelines For Bringing Out Articles:

  • The team members screen ideas to decide which will be put into Voices.
  • Choice of articles should not be motivated by religious, political and regional considerations.
  • Articles should be fair in their report, unbiased in their presentation.
  • They should follow broad principles of journalism.

Role of Students’ Council:

  • The Voices team will work jointly with the Students’ Council in raising issues pertaining to the interests of IISc students’ community.
  • With consent from Students’ Council, Archives and Publications Cell of IISc will fund Voices.

Amendments to the Bylaws:

  • The Voices Team together with the Editor reserves the right to amend the bylaws on a unanimous vote.
  • Bylaws to be reviewed annually when the new editor takes charge.