Gujarat-based businessman Zafar Sareshwala has been appointed the new chancellor of the Maulana Azad National Urdu University (MANUU).
Sareshwala, who will have a three-year term at the central university, is the chief executive and MD of Parsoli Corporation Limited.
According to a communication received from the ministry of human resource development to the vice-chancellor's office, the President of India, in his capacity as visitor of the University, appointed Sareshwala to the post for a term of three years, a release from Maulana Azad National Urdu University said on Saturday.
Sareshwala is the fourth chancellor of the Maulana Azad National Urdu University, established in 1998 to promote and develop the Urdu language and impart vocational and technical education in Urdu medium through conventional and distance modes. He succeeds Syeda Saiyidain Hameed, a former member of the planning commission.
Sareshwala is known to be close to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and is considered his track II ambassador on Muslim issues.
A critic-turned-admirer of Modi, Sareshwala - whose family comes from Gujarat - had suffered financial losses during the 2002 riots and has often maintained that an engagement with Modi and the BJP is the only way forward for the Muslims.
His critics have however termed his U-turn on Modi as sheer opportunism.
(With inputs by HTC, New Delhi)