President Pranab Mukherjee has appointed Sunaina Singh as the new vice chancellor of Nalanda University (NU). She is expected to take up the new assignment soon. The President, who is also the visitor of NU, signed the letter appointing Singh, at present vice chancellor of the English and Foreign Language University (EFLU), Hyderabad, on Tuesday. Her name figured in the panel of three names submitted to the President him. The panel was formed after shortlisting 133 applicants, six of whom were earlier called for interview. They included former pro-VC of Patna University Ranjit Verma.
The appointment of Sunaina Singh was announced late on Wednesday night after interim NU vice chancellor Pankaj Mohan, who was in the media line of fire for allegedly trying to protect a student accused in a sexual harassment case, tendered his resignation and posted an open letter to students on the Facebook. But before that, Mohan rusticated the accused, who was earlier suspended on Wednesday.
In his Facebook post, an upset Mohan wrote: “I express my sincere apology to the members of NU community for my inability to uphold their trust. I take moral responsibility for the problems in NU in the last three days. I have relinquished all administrative positions and also urged the chancellor to institute an inquiry into the period of my term as interim VC. If I am found guilty of any wilful error, I will quit the university.”
Singh, who hails from Rajasthan, is a professor of English and has held many key administrative positions, including chairperson of the department of English, Osmania University, and president of the Shastri Indo-Canadian Institute, a binational research organisation, from 2009 to 2011.