Last updated: February 08, 2023, 12:03 AM IST
During the year, some students have been accused of making anti-India statements and being involved in municipal riots, Satishree Pandit said (File photo)
Jawaharlal Nehru University is back on academic innovation and research excellence, said Santishree, who completed a year as a JNU VC on Tuesday
JNU’s image as an “anti-national university” has changed in the past year as the university’s community has shown itself to be a “nationalist, creative and inclusive” institution, Vice Chancellor Santishree D Pandit said Tuesday.
During the year, some students have been accused of making anti-India statements and being involved in municipal riots, and the university was labeled “anti-national,” she said.
But now Jawaharlal Nehru University is back to academic innovation and research excellence, said Santishree, who completed a year as a JNU VC on Tuesday.
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The image of the varsity as an anti-national institution has changed. This year, the JNU community has shown itself to be nationalistic, creative and inclusive. Academic leadership is important to my team and faculty,” she told PTI in an interview.
Santishree summed up her journey to become the first female Vice-Chancellor as “deeply satisfying”.
In 2016, three JNU students were arrested on sedition charges. Later, JNU student Sharjeel Imam and several others, including Umar Khalid, were booked under the anti-terror law Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and provisions of the Indian penal code for allegedly being the “masterminds” of the February riots 2020 in the northeast of Delhi.
In summing up her work over the past year, the vice chancellor said the varsity has made 32 hires and 44 overdue promotions.
The number of female chairpersons and dean has increased from 19 to 39, she said.
When asked what challenges the JNU is currently facing, Sanstishree said the university is struggling to synchronize its academic calendar, which has been disrupted by Covid since early 2020; completion of Ph.D submissions delayed due to the pandemic; and the modernization of the campus infrastructure.
“We are also working on expanding the implementation of NEP (New Education Policy) 2020 through more MA programs in different schools, and increasing the University-Corpus fund from ₹50 Crores to ₹250 Crores,” she said.
Born on July 15, 1962 in Leningrad, Russia, Santishree was educated in Chennai at Presidency College, both BA and MA Topper and Gold Medalist. She completed her M.Phil and PhD in International Politics from the School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New-Delhi; Post-PhD in Peace and Conflict Studies from Uppsala University, Sweden.
She was appointed last year as the first woman and alumnus Vice-Chancellor of India’s top university.
She has published four books and edited two. Her teaching and research career spans more than three and a half decades, starting as a lecturer at the University of Goa in 1988 and in 1991 at the University of Pune, now Savitribai Phule Pune University.
She is also a member of several national academic and research bodies since 2015.
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(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and was published from a syndicated news agency feed)