The Karnataka government has said it is willing to extend full cooperation to public sector defence major Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) to set up an aerospace university in the state. HAL recently announced it was planning to start an aerospace university at an initial investment of Rs 100 crore.
State higher education and tourism minister R V Deshpande today wrote two separate letters to the defence minister Manohar Parrikar and HRD minister Smriti Irani assuring the support from the state government and higher education departments. He also urged them to give top priority for setting up the proposed aerospace university in the state and assured to provide required land that could be identified by an expert team from HAL.
“Karnataka is the pioneer not only in IT and BT sectors, but also in aerospace industries sector as it produces more than a quarter of India’s aircraft and spacecraft, while serving as the base for all global players in this industry,” he said.
It is also the opportune moment to set up such an university for aerospace industry, he said.
Deshpande also highlighted that Karnataka, being the home of India’s aerospace industry, has a strong infrastructural framework with all resources required for this industry — especially, research and development capabilities, information technology, engineering services, manufacturing expertise in collaboration with global firms located in the state and a huge pool of skilled manpower. Bengaluru is the natural destination for all players in the aerospace industry, he said and added that the country’s first aerospace SEZ has been set up at Belagavi in northern Karnataka.
“By providing for the country’s first aerospace SEZ, the government has shown its clear intent in supporting the growth of this industry in the state. Further, IT giants like HCL, Infosys and Wipro have been serving the clients in global aviation and aerospace industry from Bengaluru,” Deshpande said.
He also pointed out that Bengaluru is home for global aerospace majors that have set up their technology and engineering services support centres in and around Bengaluru.
Recently, R K Tyagi, Chairman of HAL said the aerospace sector lacked the much-needed skills to meet its current and future demands. The industry needs at least one million skilled people as huge investment is being made in the sector in the coming years. HAL on its part will set up an aerospace university to create the human force required by the industry, he added.