The University of Allahabad, informally known as Allahabad University, is a public central university located in Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh, India. Established on 23 September 1887, it is the fourth oldest University in India. Its origins lie in the Muir Central College, named after Lt. Governor of North-Western Provinces, Sir William Muir in 1876, who suggested the idea of a Central University at Allahabad, which later evolved to the present university.
The foundation stone of the Muir Central College was laid by Governor-General of India, Lord Northbrook on 9 December 1873. The college was named after Sir William Muir, Lt. Governor of United Province, who was instrumental in its foundation. The building was designed by William Emerson, who also designed Victoria Memorial in Kolkata and Crawford Market in Mumbai in a combination of Indo-Saracenic, Egyptian and Gothic styles.
Initially it functioned under the University of Calcutta and later, on 23 September 1887, the University of Allahabad was established, making it the fourth university established in India.
It began as an affiliating and examining body for graduate and postgraduate degrees with a classical orientation and the responsibility for secondary education as well. By 1904 the university established its own teaching departments and instituted doctoral research programs. The University Senate hall was opened by the Lieutenant-Governor, Sir John Hewett, in 1912. In 1921, with the promulgation of the ‘Allahabad University Act of 1921’, the Muir Central College merged with the university, which was reorganized as a unitary teaching and residential university. Over the next few years its affiliated colleges were transferred to Agra University and the task of conducting secondary-level examinations was relocated.
In 1951, the university (while maintaining its fundamental unitary character) recognized certain local institutions as Associated Colleges authorized to teach undergraduate courses under the faculties of Arts, Commerce, Science, and Law.
The university has had on its rolls a host of politicians and statesmen including one president and two vice-presidents of India, two former prime ministers, several union and state ministers, at least four chief justices of the Supreme Court, besides a large number of senior bureaucrats.
In view of these achievements, as well as its position among the universities of Uttar Pradesh, the state government accorded it formal recognition in July 1992 as a ‘Premier Institution’ (Vishesh Agrani Sanstha).
During the university’s centenary celebrations in 1987 there were demands from students, faculty and employees for the granting of status as a Central University. The Government of India eventually acceded to this and the university gained both Central status and recognition as an “Institution of National Importance” in May 2005. At that time, the University of Allahabad Act stipulated the constituent colleges of the university to be:
- The five faculties of Arts, Commerce, Law, Medicine, and Science,
- Three university institutes — the Institute of Inter-Disciplinary Studies, the Institute of Professional Studies, and the National Centre of Experimental Mineralogy and Petrology) and one independent university Centre of Behavioural and Cognitive Sciences,
- One university college: the Motilal Nehru Medical College and Swarup Rani Nehru Hospital, Allahabad,
- Three constituent institutes: the Govind Ballabh Pant Social Science Institute, Allahabad, the Harish Chandra Research Institute of Mathematics and Mathematical Physics, Allahabad and the Kamla Nehru Post-graduate Medical Institute, Allahabad,
- Eleven local institutions.
Affiliation: acceptance and revocation
There was much controversy related to the merger of the Motilal Nehru Medical College with the university. This has been resolved. The Honorable High Court of Allahabad passed an order directing that integration of the medical college with the university be completed by 1 October 2006. The affiliation of the S. P. Mukherjee Government Degree College with the University has yet to be finalised because of the objections raised by the Government of Uttar Pradesh.
Harish Chandra Research Institute of Mathematics and Mathematical Physics, Allahabad and Kamla Nehru Post-Graduate Medical Institute, Allahabad have sought to revoke their affiliation from the university. The same has been endorsed by the Executive Council of the University. (Further action in this matter would be taken once the president of India, the visitor of the university, gives his consent to the recommendation of the University’s Executive Council.)
The following colleges are constituent to Allahabad University:
- Ewing Christian College (an autonomous college)
- Allahabad Degree College
- Arya Kanya Degree College
- C.M.P Degree College, the oldest affiliated college of Allahabad University
- Jagat Taran Girls Degree College
- Iswar Saran Degree College
- S.S Khanna Girls Degree College
- S.P.M Govt. Degree College
- Hamidia Girls Degree College, constituent minority college
- KP Training College
- Rajarshi Tandon Girls Degree College
- Govind Ballabh Pant Social Science Institute