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BHU dean with RSS links set to take over as PU VC

July 22, 2018 06:02 AM


BHU dean with RSS links set to take over as PU VC


Prof Raj Kumar, dean and head of the Institute of Management Studies at Banaras Hindu University (BHU) has been made the new vice-chancellor of Panjab University. It’s widely known in BHU that Kumar, 59, has sympathisers in the RSS and is close to some Sangh leaders looking after UP affairs. He will be replacing Arun Grover, becoming the 14th vice-chancellor of the university.

According to sources, Kumar was also in the race for BHU VC when Prof GC Tripathi's tenure ended amid controversy due to prolonged protest by students early this year. However, the post ultimately went to JNU's Prof Rakesh Bhatnagar. Kumar believes in keeping a low profile. Even those with strong RSS links on the BHU campus did not know he was tipped to be the Panjab University vice-chancellor.

Kumar has been appointed vice-chancellor for a period of three years starting July 23. With 35 years of teaching and research experience in insurance, capital markets and entrepreneurship, he holds DLitt, PhD, MBA and MCom degrees. He has authored four books and completed six major research projects.

The selection committee had submitted a panel of three names to Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu who is the chancellor of Panjab University. Along with Kumar, the panel had also recommended the names of Professor Raj Kumar Kohli, vice-chancellor of Central University of Punjab, Bathinda and one other person. In the end, Kumar’s name was chosen.

“Besides academic strength, we were looking for somebody with human resource management skills and a research background,” Dr Kapil Kapoor, chairman of Indian Institute of Advanced Studies at Shimla, who was part of the search panel told TOI. “The selection panel was unanimous in sending the three names.”

Kumar had set up a startup cell at BHU

Sources added that the panel was also looking for someone with sufficient administrative skills to handle a big and complex educational institution like Panjab University. Also, many of the applicants for the job had already been vice-chancellors earlier.

Besides Kapoor, the search panel included M Ramachandran, IAS (retd) and chancellor ICFAI University, Dehradun and Dr M Jagadeesh Kumar, vice-chancellor JNU.

The new Panjab University vice-chancellor has served as coordinator of the technical cell in the office of the vicechancellor at BHU and as chief coordinator of industry institute partnership cell.

He has served as executive member of LIC Policy Holder Council and All India Commerce Association. At the institute, he set up a startup cell and also started work on consultancy services, collaborative courses and projects, connecting the institute with different ministries of the central government, its agencies, banks & financial institutions and reputed private corporate entities for possible tie-ups.


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