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The University of Pune (Marathi: पुणे विद्यापीठ) (formerly the University of Poona), is a university located in western India, in the city of Pune. It was founded in 1949 and is one of India's premier Universities. Spread over a 411 acres (1.66 km2) campus, the university is home to 46 academic departments. The university has been given the highest "A" rating by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) for its overall performance.
The University of Pune was established under the Poona University Act, passed by the Bombay legislature on February 10, 1948. In the same year, Dr. M.R. Jayakar assumed office as the first vice chancellor of the university. Shri B.G. Kher, Chief Minister and Education Minister of the government of Bombay, helped ensure the university received a large allocation of land for their campus. In early 1950, the university was allocated over 411 acres (1.7 km²).
The location of the university has historical significance. Some incidents of the Battle of Khadki took place where the present day university is located. The present day main building was built in 1864 and was known as the Governor's House. The university is home to IUCAA, an institute for astronomy. And, for its strict examination assessment, it is also known as one of the toughest universities in India .
Initially the university had a jurisdiction extending over 12 districts of western Maharashtra. With the establishment of Shivaji University in Kolhapur in 1962, the jurisdiction of the university was restricted to five districts, namely Pune, Ahmednagar, Nashik, Dhule and Jalgaon. Out of these, two districts—Dhule and Jalgaon—are attached to the North Maharashtra University established in August 1990.
In 1949, there were 18 colleges affiliated to the university (including colleges such as the Film and Television Institute of India, Fergusson College, College of Engineering, Pune) with an enrollment of over 8000 students. Thereafter, the number of colleges increased, and in 2010, the university had 41 graduate departments, 433 affiliated colleges and 232 recognized research institutions, with an enrollment of 496,531 students for both the undergraduate and graduate courses. D Y Patil College of Engineering is affiliated to the university and has the largest intake of 630 seats for the bachelors degree in engineering.
Vidyavani is a community radio operated by the university programs are focused on departments of Pune University, students’ welfare schemes of the University, information about exams and results and activities of the University. Edutainment programmes which cater to the problems of youth are also broadcast.
70 research institutions have been recognized by the University of Pune for research. These include institutions of national importance like the Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA), National Chemical Laboratory (NCL), National Centre For Cell Science (NCCS), National Institute of Virology (NIV), Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics (GIPE), Documentation Research and Training Centre(DRTC) of the Indian Statistical Institute (ISI) among others.
Other research organisations which are associated with the university are:
The University of Pune was ranked 601+ in the QS World University Rankings of 2011 and 191-200 in the QS Asian University Rankings of 2012.
Main building, University of Pune
- Department of Anthropology:
- Department of Zoology: The Department of Zoology was one of the first departments to be established by the university.The Department of Zoology offers a postgraduate programme (M.Sc., M. Phil and Ph.D.) in Zoology. The effort of the department in establishing innovative teaching and training programmes led to its recognition as a Centre for Advanced Studies (CAS) by the University Grants Commission (UGC) in 2005. The department has received funds from the UGC under the Committee on Strengthening of Infrastructure for Science and Technology (COSIST). The department has also received funds from DST-Government of India under the FIST programme.
In 1985 the Department of Zoology was given the University Leadership programme. In the same year, the first national programme of M.Sc. in Biotechnology supported by the Department of Biotechnology (then NTBT), Government of India was initiated in the Department of Zoology. In the following years, research establishments like the Bioinformatics Centre, the National Centre for Cell Sciences (NCCS), the Institute of Bioinformatics and Biotechnology (IBB), which are now independent institutions, were housed in the department and their research activities were initiated.
Since 2000, the department has offered a Credit System for M.Sc. in Zoology course; with emphasis on hands-on practical training of the students and continuous internal assessment. Being an autonomous department of the university, the department has flexibility in framing courses and conducting tests and examinations. The faculty members of the department are engaged in research and have received research grants from funding agencies such as UGC, CSIR, DRDO, ISRO, DBT, DST, DAE and ICMR, in addition to industry sponsored projects.
- Department of Communication Studies: was established in 1990. The department runs a two years full-time Masters Course in Communication Studies (M.Cm.S.).
- Department of Geography: was established in the university in 1950. Every year the department admits students for it M.A/MSc., M.Phil and Ph.D courses. The department also offers students a course in Remote Sensing and Geospatial Information Systems (GIS and RS).
- Department of Geo-science:
- Institute of Bioinformatics and Biotechnology : is an autonomous institute with an affiliation to the University of Pune. It was established with a view to promote research and development activities in bioinformatics and biotechnology.
- Department of Chemistry: is one of the earliest departments established by the university. It has received the CAS status (Centre for Advanced Studies in Chemistry). The research programs of the department cover areas like computational chemistry, organic chemistry and inorganic chemistry and biochemistry. The department has a collaboration with the National Chemical Laboratory (NCL), a premier research institute in India. The department has a separate central computing facility: a computer laboratory for students.
- Department of Microbiology: is an autonomous department of the university and offers a credit based course in Microbiology which covers topics in Immunology, Medical Microbiology, Molecular Biology, Industrial Microbiology and Biochemistry.
- Department of Materials Science:
- Department of Management Sciences (PUMBA)]  is a business school run by the university. It was formed in 1971 and has about 360 students at any moment. In 2007-08, it started an MBA++ course. It also offers an MBA with a biotechnology specialization.
- Department of Biotechnology: In 1985, the National Board of Biotechnology selected the University of Pune as one of its five centres for imparting training in M.Sc. Biotechnology.
- Department of Environmental Science: was established as an interdisciplinary school of the university in 1978. As a first step, Environmental Science was introduced as an optional course in all the science departments. In view of its popularity, a one-year course, B.Sc. (Applied) was started in 1986, which was subsequently converted into a two-year full-time M. Sc. course.
- Computer Science Department (PUCSD): In 1980, a one-year programme was started towards the B.Sc.(Applied) degree in Computer Science. The M.C.A. programme was launched in 1983, the M.Tech. degree programme in 1985, and the one year B.Sc.(Applied) programme was upgraded to a two year M.Sc. in Computer Science in 1986.
- Department of Psychology:
- The Department of Physics: started its activity in 1952. The research programmes of the Department cover areas like Materials Science, Solid State Physics, Condensed Matter Physics, Nonlinear Dynamics, Scanning Tunneling Microscopy, Cloud Physics, Thin/Thick Films, Diamond Coatings, Nuclear and Accelerator Physics, Lasers, Plasma Physics, Field Electron/Ion Microscopy, Biophysics etc. The department has received funds from DST- government of India under the FIST program.
- Atmospheric and Space Sciences:
- Department of Electronic Science:
- Department of Ecotechnology:
- Department of Instrumentation Science (USIC): A spin-off from the university workshop, the department was conceived as an extension of the physics department to build and maintain instruments used by the Physics department, and served as a prototyping laboratory for building and testing new instruments. The department started running an M.Sc. program for Applied Electronics. This represented one of the pioneering attempts in India to run a University department autonomously, funded in large part by student fees and research projects undertaken by the department. To provide a broader focus, the M.Sc. Applied Electronics course gradually metamorphosed into the M.Sc Instrumentation Science Course with additional focus on sensors and transducers, as well as product design. In addition to the M.Sc course, the department also features a sensor lab which continues to collaborate with the Physics and Electronics departments providing PhD candidates an inter-disciplinary environment to pursue independent research work.
- Centre for Modeling and Simulation (CMS): is an autonomous centre at the university. It was established in 2003 to promote awareness about mathematical modeling and simulation methodologies, to encourage interdisciplinary problem-centric approaches to basic and applied research, and to nurture computing expertise on the university campus.
The centre runs a two-year full-time M.Tech programme in Modeling and Simulation.
- Interdisciplinary School of Scientific Computing (ISSC):
- Department of Linguistic:
- Department of Film & Visual Studies:
- Department of Statistics: This department was established in 1953. The department was situated in the main building of the University. Prof. V. S. Huzurbazar was the first head of the department. In 1962 the department was shifted to its new elegant building later named as `Wrangler Paranjapye Ganit ani Sankhyashastra Bhavan'. The department of Statistics was separated in 1976. Now the department is recognized as the `Centre for Advanced Studies in Statistics'.
- Department of Mathematics:
- Department of Politics and Public Administration:
- Department of Economics: The Department offers a Master's programme in Economics and also runs a doctoral program. The department also has a Post-Graduate Diploma in Foreign Trade.
- Department of Architecture:
- Department of Urban Studies & Planning:
- Department of Foreign Languages: This department was started in Ranade institute building in 1949. This offers courses for German, French, Russian, Japanese and Spanish languages from elementary level to post graduation courses. Batches are conducted in morning as well as in evening. Over 1500 students are enrolled every year for the courses.
Library & Centers
Student halls of residence
Past and present vice-chancellors of the university are:
- Vishwanath Pratap Singh, 7th Prime Minister of India and 41st Raja of Manda
- P.V. Narasimha Rao, 9th Prime Minister of India
- Vilasrao Deshmukh, 17th and 19th Chief Minister of Maharashtra
- C. Kumar N. Patel, vice Chancellor for Research at the University of California, Los Angeles
- Padmanabhan Balaram, director of the Indian Institute of Science
- Vijay Kelkar, economist and academic
- Suhas Patankar, pioneer in the field of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and Finite volume method
- Shankar Sarda, journalist
- Shereen Bhan, journalist
- Kantilal Mardia, statistician
- Thomas Kailath, scientist in the area of information theory
- Venugopal Dhoot, Chairman of Videocon
- Siddharth Vinayak Patankar, journalist, NDTV
- Nabeel Rajab, Bahraini human rights activist
- Satish Alekar, noted Indian playwright
- Sharmila Rege, noted Indian sociologist and currently Director of the Women's Studies Centre at the University of Pune
- R. Raj Rao, professor and head, Department of English, University of Pune