Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh has said his government would soon urge the Centre to approve projects worth Rs 842 crore under Rashtriya Uchhatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA) for the period 2013-17.
Presiding over a State Higher Education Plan (SHEP) meet in Dharamsala, Singh said under RUSA a project would be funded in the ratio of 90:10 by the Centre and the state.
He said Himachal Pradesh was one of the six hilly states which would get 90 per cent central funding, and in case of other states the Centre would bear 65 per cent project cost.
Singh said Himachal was one of the pioneering state in the country to implement RUSA in right perspective under the Choice Based Credit System (CBCS) in a phased manner to bring in qualitative improvement in higher education.
The objective of RUSA was to provide access, equality and excellence in higher education to bring socio-economic change. Seventy-two government degree colleges, including five Sanskrit Colleges, five government-aided colleges, and two state varsities - Himachal Pradesh University and Himachal Technical University - would be covered under the project.
He said "Cluster Universities" would be created in Shimla, Mandi and Dharamsala by clubbing four to five colleges, and recommendation would be made for two new colleges at Sarahan in Sirmour, and Chhatrari in Chamba.
The Chief Minister said Rs 26 crore would be sought for a new engineering college at Nagrota Bagwan in Kangra district. A grant of about Rs 160 crore would also be sought from the Centre under the component "Infrastructure Grants to Colleges", he added.