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VC endeavouring to make AU a centre of academic excellence

Eminent social scientist and a leading scholar of international relations, Professor Rajendra Govind Harshe, popularly known as Rajen Harshe, Vice-Chancellor of Allahabad University, is endeavouring for restoring the glory of AU, the fourth oldest university of India. However, he does not like the institution to be addressed as "Oxford of the East" (We are not the eastern counterpart of any university) and says the people should feel pride in having association with the varsity. "Call it only Allahabad University and make it such a popular institution that the people of other countries should discuss its qualities," he says.
By Prem Kant Tiwari | None, Allahabad
PUBLISHED ON APR 30, 2006 12:45 AM IST

Eminent social scientist and a leading scholar of international relations, Professor Rajendra Govind Harshe, popularly known as Rajen Harshe, Vice-Chancellor of Allahabad University, is endeavouring for restoring the glory of AU, the fourth oldest university of India. However, he does not like the institution to be addressed as "Oxford of the East" (We are not the eastern counterpart of any university) and says the people should feel pride in having association with the varsity. "Call it only Allahabad University and make it such a popular institution that the people of other countries should discuss its qualities," he says.

Teachers, employees and students must toil for making AU as a centre of academic excellence. They are capable, enthusiastic and they must get an opportunity to prove their worth, feels Prof Harshe.
In a tête-à-tête with Prem Kant Tiwari, Prof Harshe highlighted the specialties of the university and enumerated his plans to improve the academic atmosphere on the AU campus.

How are you planning to improve the academic atmosphere in the university.

Allahabad University has had an enviable reputation. Besides giving several prime ministers and legal luminaries to the country, it has also produced a number of eminent academicians and scholars. Moreover, AU is also the Alma Mater of a large number of civil servants.
Several committees of teachers have been constituted to look into the problems and suggest ways to solve them. Hence, there is a regular interaction with teachers.
I am happy that teachers, staff and students are co-operating me in my efforts. Executive Council and Academic Council are playing a crucial role in progress of the varsity. In fact, the desired results have started coming.

What is your scheme for teachers?
The university has good teachers and many of them are eminent ones. Besides, several departments are doing very well. We are trying to create an atmosphere in which the teachers should concentrate more on teaching and research. They should get more exposure through publishing and travelling. They must get an opportunity to enhance their competitiveness and focus on quality education.

What about students?
Excellent knowledge of computer and English is a must for students' progress. They must be well-informed and well-read. For good studies, we are making efforts to improve attendance and digitalise the library. Besides, books, journals and other reading material are being arranged for them. Better facilities for students will certainly promote the sense of discipline, the most essential element for development of any country. Over 400 illegal inmates have been removed from hostels and the genuine students have been given accommodation.
Necessity of introducing various new courses is being realised and some more buildings will have to be constructed for the purpose.

Is there any difference since AU attained the status of a Central university in July 2005? 
Yes, the difference is visible now. The University Grants Commission has sought a plan of Rs 40 crore and we are working in this direction. Several crucial issues have been discussed by organising lectures and seminars. Besides, many issues of international importance will be discussed in the days to come.  
The university is also planning to promote education of Urdu and Persian as these languages will help promote ties with neighbouring countries like Iran.

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