The HRD Ministry has named scientist and former DRDO chief Vijay Kumar Saraswat as the next chancellor of JNU. A full-time member of NITI Aayog, Saraswat will be replacing former ISRO chief Krishnaswamy Kasturirangan whose five-year term ended on March 30. Though Saraswat is yet to receive official communication, his name has been finalised for the varsity’s top position, according to sources in the ministry. Saraswat was conferred Padma Shri in 1998, Padma Bhusan in 2013 and had served as a chief scientific advisor to the Minister of Defence.
As project director of Prithvi, Saraswat steered the design, development, production and induction of the first indigenous surface-to-surface missile system into the armed forces. According to teachers in the university, the outgoing chancellor, Kasturirangan, showed much interest in language, literature and cultural studies. A chancellor has a little role in day-to-day activities of the administration.