LUCKNOW : On May 13
the newly-appointed Lucknow
University vice-chancellor S B Nimse formally took over
the top office of the university here.
Chancellor B L Joshi had,
on April 29, appointed
him as the vice-chancellor, choosing him from a panel of
three names. He succeed IAS officer
G B Pattanaik who had been officiating as the VC since
November 2, 2012.
Pattanaik who was the
principal secretary to the Governor-Chancellor, the
faculty feared, may be confirmed as the VC, but the UGC
regulations had made the move difficult.
Nimse, the VC of Swami
Ramanand Teerth Marathwada University (SRTMU),
Vishunpuri, Nanded, Maharashtra since July 2008 has
accepted a difficult assignment.
A Ph.D in mathematics,
with 34 years of teaching experience, Nimse is a member
of the governing council of the Consultancy Development
Centre, DSIR and also a member of the steering committee
for XII plan on higher education, Planning Commission.
Nimse's appointment has
activated the campus whisper-mongers, each giving his
own explanation to the new Maratha connection, but
investigations revealed that it was Prof R C Sobti the
president of the Indian Science Congress who probably
showed Nimse the way to Lucknow University.
The Chancellor by another
order appointed V K Gupta as the new vice-chancellor of
Dr Ram Manohar Lohia Avadh University (RMLAU), Faizabad.
Gupta, at present, is the
head of chemistry department, Indian Institute of
Technology (IIT), Roorkee. He will succeed officiating
VC Prof PK Sinha from department of economics, RMLAU.
Prof Sinha was appointed
on November 1, 2012, for a period of six months after
Prof R C Saraswat resigned on October 30 citing personal
A B.Sc from Meerut
University in 1972, Gupta did MSc in physical chemistry
from University of Roorkee in 1975. In 1979, he joined
PhD in physical chemistry from University of Roorkee.
takes over at Lucknow's Ambedkar varsity
LUCKNOW : On January 21 Prof R C Sobti, former
vice-chancellor of Panjab University, Chandigarh
formally took over as the Vice-Chancellor of
Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University, Lucknow.
university is a Central university with President Pranab
Mukherjee as its Visitor. His appointment is for a term
of five years and he replaces Prof B Hanumaiah who was
on an extension after the completion of his tenure since
June 17, 2012.
his first day, the Dr Sobti interacted with students,
teachers and employees. He said effort would be made to
take the university to a new high.
vice-chancellor of Panjab University Chandigarh Prof
was made on January 15.
Well-connected Dr Sobti
was appointed Panjab University vice-chancellor in 2006
for a term of three years. Before his term could
conclude he was appointed, in February 2009, the
first VC of the newly established Central University of
Himachal Pradesh but he did not join because he got a
second term in Panjab University.
After the conclusion of
his second term on July 22, (though he was in the race
for a third term) he was offered vice-chancellorship of
the newly established DAV University in Jalandhar which
he hasn't joined till date.
On January 6 he was
elected the general president of Indian Science Congress
Association for the 101st session to be held on January
3-7, 2014. He is a member of the executive body of
National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC),
Bangalore and the chairman of the governing body of
National Council of Science Museums.
He holds a doctoral degree
in Biotechnology and has supervised 44 PhDs and is
currently working on eight others.
Thandavan takes over as Madras varsity VC
CHENNAI On January
18, Prof R. Thandavan formally took over as the 43rd
vice-chancellor of the University of Madras.
All well-wishers and admirers, mostly university
staff gathered at the vice-chancellor's office to
congratulate him. “I know about every nook and corner of
the university, except the VC’s office,” said Prof.
Thandavan with a smile.
The former professor was informed a week ago about his
selection for the post of VC, but was waiting to meet
the Chief Minister before he assumed charge, sources
The 62-year-old was the founding faculty member of the
Anna Centre of Public Affairs at the university, where
he served as the head.
“He has been elected to the Syndicate thrice, and has
also been part of the Senate. He knows ninety per cent
of the people here by their name so he has support from
both the teaching and non-teaching staff,” a professor
said. However, professors also added that he has the
responsibility of bringing together the several factions
of the university.
On the controversial issue of exam malpractices at the
university, Prof. Thandavan said he was yet to receive
the report from K. Aludiapillai, a retired IAS officer
who was looking into the matter.
The VC said appointing the registrar and filling up
vacancies was at the top of his task list. “But it will
be done by issuing advertisements without any
interference from anybody,” he said.
Prof. Thandavan also said there were several new courses
in the offing, particularly in the area of humanities
and pure sciences. “I know almost everyone in this
university. I have been here for many years, and I am
aware of the university’s strengths and weaknesses. I
will try to convince everybody to work together,” he
S Rangappa takes over as Mysore varsity VC
: On January 11 Prof K S Rangappa took over as the 24th
vice-chancellor of the University of Mysore, from the
acting VC Prof B Shivaraj.
Rangappa told reporters that he got a call from the
Governor-Chancellor H R Bhardwaj in the morning,
appointing him as the vice-chancellor.
Rangappa, who is the incumbent VC of Karnataka State
Open University (KSOU), succeeds Prof V G Talawar, who
retired on December 10.
Ramakrishnan is Vikram Sarabhai Centre boss
S. Ramakrishnan, ‘distinguished scientist’ at the
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), has taken over
as Director of the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC),
Mr. Ramakrishnan, with over four decades of experience
in rocketry, took over from P.S. Veeraraghavan after
heading the Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre (LPSC) for
Mr. Ramakrishnan is an expert in aerospace propulsion,
launch vehicle systems, and project management. Before
taking leadership of LPSC, he was Director (projects) at
VSSC and chairman, flight readiness review panel. He had
played a key role in accomplishing the PSLV C-11/Chandrayaan
Following in the footsteps of A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, Mr.
Ramakrishnan played a key role in realising India’s
first satellite launch vehicle SLV-3. . The country had
honoured him with a Padma Shri in 2003.
Grover takes over at Panjab University
CHANDIGARH : On
July 23 Arun Grover took over as the 12th
Vice-Chancellor of Panjab University and in his very
first move he removed his special officer (SO) Santosh
Chopra and appointed S L Verma, a retired officer, in
his place. It is the VC’s discretion to appoint the SO.
Verma was the SO during Dr K N Pathak's term and Grover
being Pathak's student probably took the cue from him.
Soon after taking over Grover announced his priorities
and said that he would promote research. He said said
special focus would be given to new research projects
for which a strategy would be devised and teachers will
be compelled to go on sabbatical leave to pursue
Grover comes from Tata
Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) where he had
initiated a best thesis award to promote research.
“I think research output in the PU needs to be enhanced
which can be done when teachers get enough time for the
same,” Grover said. The new VC said he had been informed
that the PU was going through faculty crunch and in such
a case, the overburdened teachers don’t get enough time
to pursue research. “The problem of faculty shortage
would be addressed on priority,” he said. Grover said
after every six-year of service, teachers are entitled
to get one-year sabbatical leave to pursue research and
the university would encourage teachers to take
The VC said experienced researchers should also stay in
the PU after their retirement to help the university
grow in the field of research. The PU is now
going to work out a strategy that would involve teachers
as well as the students for pursuing research.
A policy for the PU-affiliated colleges will be devised
so that college teachers contribute in research. “The PU
is fortunate to have around 190 affiliated colleges and
the teachers can make a great contribution to research,”
Grover was appointed
Panjab University vice-chancellor on June 29.
His appointment is
expected to bring
in a puff of fresh air from research-rich TIFR and stop,
for once, in-house appointments that has led to
malignant faculty inbreeding on the campus.
Grover's appointment by
the Chancellor Dr Hamid Ansari breaks a long stream of
"insider" appointments which is abhorred worldwide in
all top academic institutions, including India for
various time-tested reasons.
In Panjab University
however, following the son-of-the-soil policy the
previous six VCs had been elevated from the university
faculty, including R C Sobti, K N Pathak, M M Puri, T N
Kapoor, R P Bambah and R C Pal -- and many of them got
more than one term, pushing the inbreeding paradigm with
The outgoing vice-chancellor R C Sobti
quit the office on July 22.
Grover has beaten eight
contenders most prominent of them being the Sobti
himself who was angling for a third term using the G K
A product of Panjab University, Grover studied at the
physics department of the university from 1968 to 1972.
While at TIFR, Grover came to PU on
deputation between 1991 and 1994 to teach. Under the
then VC Prof KN Pathak, he designed a course in material
science for the students of M Phil, MSc and BSc.
Grover’s field is solid state physics - a branch of
physics that deals with the structure and properties of
Grover has also been elected fellow of the Indian
Academy of Sciences, Bangalore, and the National Academy
of Science, New Delhi.
don to be new Jadavpur varsity VC
CALCUTTA : A
professor pf Physics at IIT Kharagpur, Dr Souvik
Bhattacharya, will be the new vice-chancellor of Jadavpur University, Satish Tiwary, Principal Secretary
Higher Education said on July 4.
He becomes the second academician, after Suranjan Das of
Calcutta University, to be selected for the VC’s post at
a state university.
“Souvik Bhattacharya is going to be appointed
vice-chancellor of Jadavpur University. Necessary orders
have been issued,” Tiwary said.
Asked when Bhattacharya would take up the university he
said: “It will take some time. Till then, interim VC
Abhijit Chakraborty will continue in the post.”
Bhattacharya, a JU alumnus, told reporters that he would
like to join his alma mater by July 19. He has
served as dean (student affairs) at the IIT and also
chairman and vice-chairman of the panel tasked with
screening students for admission to postgraduate courses
at the IITs. “The experience would come in handy while
running JU,” he said.
The JU search panel comprised Gobardhan Mehta
(ex-director, IISc), M. Anandakrishnan (ex-VC, Madras
University) and Srikumar Banerjee (ex-chairman, Atomic
The panel had interviewed
12 candidates, including the interim VC. Sources said
the IIT teacher’s name was at the top of the list the
panel had sent to the Chancellor.
Das gets 2nd term at Calcutta University
KOLKATA : Historian
Suranjan Das has got a second term as the
vice-chancellor of Calcutta University by the
Governor-Chancellor M.K. Narayanan. His appointment for a
four-year term was announced by the Raj
Bhawan on May 22, 2012.
Once considered close to the
CPI-M his name was included in the panel of probables by the
search committee , he got a second term of four years. The
recommendation came from a three-member committee comprising
sociologist Prof. Andre Beteille, historian Mushirul Hassan
and nuclear scientist Anil Kakodkar, set up by the Trinamul
“It proves that I was not an improper choice either,
when I took charge in 2008. Otherwise I could not find a
place in the list of the high power search committee,” said
Prof. Das as he received the letter from higher education
department confirming his second term.
This is the first appointment
of a full-time Vice-Chancellor during the regime of the new
government which has been done according to the clause laid
down in the West Bengal University Laws (Amendment) Act,
Prof. Das was the pro Vice-Chancellor of the varsity
from 2002 to 2008 before he became the Vice-Chancellor for
the first term.
His term originally ended in April following which he
was given an extension for six months as the recommendation
of the search committee was not submitted before his term
New VC for WBSU
Prof. Koushik Gupta, a professor in Economics at
Rabindra Bharati University has been appointed as the new
Vice-Chancellor of West Bengal State University for six
months. He will take charge from tomorrow. Prof. Ashoke
Ranjan Thakur, the former V-C of the university, ended his
term on 20 May.
Namdeo Gade is Pune varsity VC
PUNE: On May 15
biologist Wasudeo Namdeo Gade was named new Vice-Chancellor
(VC) of the University of Pune (UoP). The announcement by
the Raj Bhawan brings to an end an eight-month-long search
for top job.
The post had been lying vacant ever since R K
Shevgaonkar resigned as the Pune university VC on September
15, 2011, following his appointment as the director of IIT
State governor-chancellor K Sankaranarayanan approved Gade's
name from among five candidates, who were shortlisted by the
search committee headed by former Punjab & Haryana high
court chief justice Mukul Mudgal.
The panel had shortlisted the candidates in January for
final selection by the Chancellor. However, the process got
entangled in a legal tussle in the Bombay high court over a
PIL challenging the composition of the VC's search
On May 11, the high court dismissed the PIL, paving the way
for Raj Bhavan to announce the final selection. Gade is
currently the Director of the UoP's Board for Colleges and
University Development (BCUD) -- second most important
office in the university.
His new appointment is for a five-year term and will come
into effect from the date he will assume charge of the
office of the VC or till he attains the age of 65 years,
whichever is earlier.
Born on November 20, 1952, Gade obtained his BSc in biology
from the Nagpur university and later secured his MSc (life
sciences), MPhil and PhD in life sciences from the
Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. He was a
post-doctoral fellow in France and Sweden between 1988 and
Gade is a recipient of the Lupin Endowment Award instituted
by the University Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai,
and has served as a scientist in the Institute of Genomics
and Integrative Biology of CSIR in Delhi for 20 years
between 1983 and 2003. He was Reader and later Professor in
the department of biotechnology, University of Pune, from
July 2003 till he became BCUD chief.
It may be recalled that a Thane-based social activist,
Suresh Patilkhede, had moved the HC challenging the validity
of the Maharashtra Universities (Amendment) Ordinance, 2009.
The Ordinance, which amended certain provisions of the
Maharashtra Universities Act, 1994, provides for nomination
of a search committee to shortlist candidates for the VC'S
post. The Chancellor then selects one of the short-listed
Patilkhede contended that the process went against the
regulations of the Universities Grant Commission (UGC). He
further contended the selection mechanism was illegal and
lacked basic sanctity of law.
A division bench of chief justice Mohit Shah and justice
Niteen Jamdar, however, did not find anything wrong with the
process. "The respondents have acted in consonance with the
provisions of the Maharashtra Universities Act," the judges
observed. The HC also turned down a request by the
petitioner to stay the selection process till they moved
The state authorities had said on January 6 that they would
not continue with the selection process till the petition
Mathivanan heads Madurai Kamaraj univ
MADURAI : On April 9
2012 Kalyani Mathivanan took over as the 14th Vice-Chancellor of
Madurai Kamaraj University here. She is the first woman to
head the university top post in the University's 46-year-old
Before heading the university
she was Head, Department of English, Ethiraj College for
Women. Its after a very long time that a professor of
English has headed a university in Tamil Nadu.
Talking to Academics India
on phone she said she knows Hindi well and would not have
much problem in Delhi which most state vice-chancellors
avoid because of language problem.
Daughter-in-law of one of the
DMK's founding fathers and former Tamil Nadu Finance
Minister V. R. Nedunchezhian she holds a PhD and D.Litt, in
English from Madras University and has 30 years of teaching
experience. She said that ‘Holistic Development' of the
university would be her action plan. As of now, Twelfth Plan
preparations and the University with Potential for
Excellence projects to be done stands as her immediate
“It is not only my dream but my parents and parents-in-law's
dream that has become a reality and now I occupy the
position of VC where my father, M. D. K. Kuthalingam, served
in the 90s” she said.
The university has been
functioning without a VC since April 19, 2011, after R
Karpaga Kumaravel demitted office.
N Bhagat is Ranchi varsity vice-chancellor
RANCHI : On January 1
nearly a month after the retirement of Vice-Chancellor of Ranchi University (RU) and Pro Vice-Chancellor of Sido Kanhu
Murmu University (SKMU), Jharkhand Governor-Chancellor, Syed
Ahmed appointed Dr Lakshmi Narayan Bhagat and Dr Ram Yatan
Prasad as the vice-chancellor of RU and SKMU Pro VC
respectively. Their appointment is for three years.
Dr LN Bhagat was serving as the Director of Institute of
Science and Management (ISM), Pundag and Dr Ram Yatan Prasad
had been serving as the Head of the Chemistry department in
Vinoba Bhave University.
The names were proposed by the search committee comprising
Justice RK Merathia, chief secretary SK Choudhary, principal
secretary to Chancellor AK Pandey and former Vice-Chancellor
of RU, KK Nag.
Later Nag said : “We had
shortlisted three names for the final selection list for the
posts of VC and Pro VC. Prof Ramesh Kumar Pandey, GS Singh
from IIT-Roorkee and Dr LN Bhagat were among the final names
in the list.”