Nationality row: Anand declines doctorate

Vishwanathan Anand
Hyderabad, Aug 24: In the wake of a controversy over his citizenship, Viswanathan Anand on Tuesday, Aug 24 decided to decline the honorary doctorate that was set to be conferred on him.

The University of Hyderabad was forced to delay the function to confer the honour on the world chess champion after the Human Resource Development (HRD) ministry raised question over his nationality.

The confusion emerged from the fact that Anand holds an Indian passport but lives in Spain.

Reports suggest that Anand's decision is limited only till the controversy dies down, as HRD minister, Kapil Sibal is understood to have spoken to the ace sportsman urging him to accept the award.

Now, with the citizenship confusion hitting the media and the delay in the conferring of the honour, the University has decided to confer the doctorate to Anand at a function on Tuesday, Aug 24 itself.

"We are ready to award the honorary doctorate to Anand. The doctorate has only been delayed and not denied as the HRD ministry has raised doubts over the chess champion's nationality," Head of Mathematics Department in the University Rajat Tandon said.

"We learnt somewhere in July this year that the HRD ministry is suspecting Anand's nationality. We sent several clarifications to them but still they have not cleared the file related to the award of honorary doctorate," he said.

Tandon confirmed that the university is now planning on holding a function tonight to honour Anand but the champion declined to accept it in view of the controversy.

OneIndia News

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