Panjab University (PU) is a public university situated in the city of Chandigarh, in northern India. The university was established in 1882 as the University of Punjab (in what is now Lahore, Pakistan) making it one of India’s oldest institutions.
Home to over 70 teaching and research departments, the university also has 188 affiliated colleges across the Punjab state, as well as the PU Rural Centre Kauni, which offers rural students state-of-the-art educational facilities on a 20 acre, eco-friendly site. In addition, there are another three Regional Centres found in the cities of Mukstar, Ludhiana and Hoshiarpur.
PU runs degree programmes across a wide-range of departments, including: Arts, Science, Languages, Law, Education and Fine Arts, Engineering and Technology, Business Management and Commerce, Pharmaceutical Sciences and Dairying, Medical Sciences, and Animal Husbandry and Agriculture. Most of these faculties offer their own specialised libraries for students.
Spread across 550 acres, the university’s main campus has been designed to cater for the academic, administrative, recreational and residential needs of all its students. There are eight hostels for male students and nine for women, as well as a Working Women Hostel and two sports hostels. Other facilities include a shopping centre, a health centre, a bank, post office, swimming pool, open-air theatre, botanical gardens and much more.
PU students have access to a diverse range of art and architecture, including the Gandhi Bhawan auditorium – a building that’s become a major cultural landmark in Chandigarh. Situated in the centre of a pond and dedicated to the study of Gandhi’s life and work, its entrance bears the inscription ‘Truth is God.’
The university’s other notable buildings include the Fine Arts Museum – home to a number of small galleries dotted around a courtyard, each sheltered by an umbrella-shaped roof – the University Library and the Student Centre.
The former Prime Minister of India Manmohan Singh and the late NASA astronaut Kalpana Chawla (who died in the 2003 Space Shuttle Columbia disaster) are among the university’s impressive alumni.