Jamia Millia Islamia has finally got a new vice-chancellor and the choice seems to have satisfied the teachers. The central university will see Talat Ahmad at its helm and he is expected to take over next week.
Ahmad’s previous assignment was as the vice-chancellor of the University of Kashmir. He is a noted earth scientist and was earlier a professor at the department of geology, Delhi University.
The university has been functioning under an acting vice-chancellor since July last.
The choice seems to have pleased the teachers who had written to the President in January this year, asking that an academician be chosen for the position this time. More than 300 teachers had signed the letter.
“We are pleased with the choice as the university needs a reputed academician to head it. In the past, there have been several instances where the teaching community was at odds with the administration and we feel this could have been avoided if an academician was heading the institution,” said a teacher on condition of anonymity.
Ahmad completed his M.Sc in geology from Aligarh Muslim University and did his M.Phil and Ph.D in geochemistry from Jawaharlal Nehru University. He has also been a post-doctoral fellow with the University of Leicester, the University of Cambridge and the Nagoya University in Japan.
Teachers at the university had demanded that the university be led by an academician after former vice-chancellor Najeeb Jung, who is presently serving as the Lt-Governor of Delhi, vacated the position in July 2014.
The post of the university vice-chancellor was advertised for in November last and several names, including that of JNU professor Zoya Hassan and former Hyderabad University vice-chancellor Seyed Ehtesham Hasnain, were thrown up.