Bill for setting up of university on land acquired for industries gets Karnataka assembly nod
The BJP-led state government in Karnataka on Tuesday passed a bill to allocate the setting up of a private university on land acquired for industries at one-third of the cost of acquisition.
The bill was brought in the ongoing monsoon session of the state assembly in which Dr Ashwath Narayan, Karnataka’s minister for Higher education, tabled the bill to allow Chanakya university to be set up in 116 acres in the Aerospace Park near Devanahalli, on the outskirts of Bengaluru.
The Congress took serious objection to this as it was brought up for discussion after 8 pm on Tuesday which they called a “scam”.
Siddaramaiah said that there was no provision to give the land for setting up for a university when it was acquired by the Karnataka Industrial Area Development Board (KIADB) for the sole purposes of giving it to industries.
“Around 116 acres of land was acquired at a cost of ₹1.5 crore per acre. The cost of acquisition itself is around ₹170 crore and you are giving it at ₹50 crore,” he said.
The former chief minister also said that the land was developed further and the total cost to the government was in excess of ₹300 crore and it was “loot” that the government was giving it to a private university for ₹50 crore.
Chief minister Basavaraj Bommai said that it was a not-for-profit model and had a comprehensive multi-subject curriculum. “When there is a big reform, there is apprehension,” Bommai said.
The chief minister also justified the allocation since similar concessions are given to industries to create jobs and the government will continue to dole out concessions to organisations who come in “good faith” and give their children education with the future in mind.
The contentious bill was passed amid chaos and even speaker Visweswara Heggade Kageri too weighed in his favour to give such universities an opportunity.
“We should give more encouragement to institutions that promote Indian cultural values. Today’s education has been westernised,” he said.
He added that the intent to give encouragement to such universities is to ensure that future generations do not become more westernised.