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Fresh term for CU head

The tenure of Calcutta University vice-chancellor Suranjan Das has been renewed by another four years.

His was among the three names a three-member search committee had forwarded to governor M.K. Narayanan, also chancellor of the university, for final selection.

The search panel comprised sociologist and The Telegraph columnist Andre Beteille, scientist Anil Kakodkar and historian Mushirul Hasan.

The Raj Bhavan conveyed the governor’s decision to the higher education department on Tuesday afternoon, following which an official said: “The governor has renewed Das’s tenure for another four years.”

Das’s first four-year term as CU head ended on April 30. He has been functioning as interim vice-chancellor since.

“Calcutta University has a rich heritage and a lot of potential to be on top. Yet, there are certain problems like lack of proper infrastructure. We also need to introduce more interdisciplinary courses. I will try my best to address these issues,” said Das, 58, who served as pro vice-chancellor (academic) of the university from 2002 to 2008.

A historian, he has done his DPhil on communal riots in Bengal between 1905 and 1947 from Oxford University.

Das, who sources said was close to former chief minister Jyoti Basu and former CPM state secretary Anil Biswas, is the first VC chosen by a search committee.

The Mamata Banerjee government has formed such panels for Calcutta and Jadavpur universities as part of measured aimed at freeing higher education of political interference, which is believed to have been responsible for the declining standard of education under the Left Front rule.

nAnother appointment: Kaushik Gupta, a professor of economics at Rabindra Bharati University, has been appointed interim VC of West Bengal State University.