Karan Bilimoria installed as UK university chancellor

  • Prasun Sonwalkar, Hindustan Times, London
  • Updated: Jul 18, 2014 19:01 IST

Prominent Indian-origin entrepreneur Karan Bilimoria has been installed as the seventh chancellor of the University of Birmingham, one of Britain's research-intensive universities, at a ceremony in Birmingham.

Born in India, he sits in the House of Lords as Lord Bilimoria of Chelsea. The ceremonial role of a chancellor includes an ambassadorial function, working with the vice-chancellor to raise the university's profile and advance its interests nationally and internationally.

David Eastwood, vice-chancellor of the university, said: "I am delighted that Lord Bilimoria has agreed to become chancellor of the University of Birmingham. He embodies the character, spirit, and ethos of the university".

On accepting the role, Bilimoria, 52, said: "The University of Birmingham is a wonderful institution with such an illustrious history dating back to its foundation by Joseph Chamberlain in 1900. It is also the university where my mother, my uncle and my maternal grandfather studied".

Bilimoria, who founded a popular beer brand, received a BCom degree from Osmania University in 1981 and moved to London where he qualified as a Chartered Accountant. He then went on to read Law at Sidney Sussex College, University of Cambridge, graduating in 1988.

At another ceremony, secretary-general of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) Alwyn Didar Singh was conferred an honorary doctorate from the University of Birmingham.

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