Will bring transparency: Anna varsity V-C

Surappa takes charge amid opposition from political parties and allegations of graft against some faculty members

Updated - December 01, 2021 12:21 pm IST

Published - April 07, 2018 12:11 am IST - CHENNAI

M.K. Surappa with Governor Banwarilal Purohit.

M.K. Surappa with Governor Banwarilal Purohit.

M.K. Surappa, the newly-appointed Vice-Chancellor of Anna University, has said he would bring transparency to the governance of the institution.

In a telephonic interview with The Hindu , he said his primary goal was to “make people feel that everything works and believe that they can get the best out of anybody.”

Mr. Surappa is taking over as the university’s V-C in the face of opposition from regional political parties to his appointment and at a time when some of the university’s staff are facing charges of corruption. During a recent seminar on corruption in higher education, some faculty of the institution voiced strong reservations about having a person from outside the State as the V-C. They are also upset with the non-implementation of the Career Advancement Scheme in the university.

Mr. Surappa, who hails from a village called Mirle in Mysuru district (his first initial refers to the village), and is currently an honorary professor in the Department of Materials Engineering at the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, said taking up the position of V-C would be a challenging assignment. A research scholar whose papers are widely cited (this year alone, according to Scopus, his research articles have been cited at least 91 times), he plans to take charge “sometime next week”.

‘Glorious legacy’

“Anna University is one of the outstanding institutions and is ranked first among State universities. It has a glorious legacy and illustrious people have occupied the chair. I would like to improve the learning, teaching and training aspects. I would like to build confidence in people that they can get the best out of anybody. People should feel that everything works in the institution,” he said.

On his understanding of the functioning of the institution, he said he had been the dean of the IISc and the director of the Indian Institute of Technology — Ropar — experience that he would bring to his role as V-C.

To a question on how he planned to put his experience from a smaller institution to use at Anna University, he said: “Yesterday, the Governor also asked me the same question, and I said I wanted to raise the level of the institution. I want it to surpass one of the IITs.”

Asked how he proposed to take along the 500-plus affiliated colleges with him, he said, “Colleges are private institutions and they will continue to function as they do now. I see my role as V-C as a facilitator.”

With regard to the despondency among the faculty over the delay in implementing the Career Advancement Scheme, he said, “I would like to remove the pessimism among the people by assuring them that those who work hard and are productive will get due recognition.”

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