In a bid to attract private investment in the higher education sector, the Chief Minister has announced that special rules or legislation will be formulated for providing land subsidies for establishment of private higher education and research institutes.

This means that government land will be provided at guidance value to investors, further reinforcing the government's disposition towards a Private-Public-Partnership in key areas, including higher education and technical training. Emphasising on the need for more private Industrial Training Institutes, it is proposed that government land up to five acres will be provided at half the guidance value in every district to those who seek to invest in establishing such centres.

To further ease the process of acquiring land clearance, the new scheme will grant blanket approval for purchasing agricultural land (up to 5 acres) will be granted. Twenty five per cent of the capital cost, a maximum of Rs. 25 lakh, will be provided as grant, and an additional 10 per cent will be provided to those established in backward taluks (as identified by Dr. Nanjundappa Commission). Rs 50 crore had been earmarked for this.

Through these schemes, the Government hopes to establish at least 1,000 private ITIs and double the current intake of two lakh in the State.

This proposal concedes to a long standing demand of private managements, who have found real estate expensive and increasingly difficult to obtain, sources in the Higher Education Department told The Hindu.

However, officials fear that the Chief Minister's offer on private ITIs – which is specific to district centres and rural areas – may not find many takers.