The government of India has proposed to to set up National Institutes of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (Niper) in the cities of Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Hajipur and Kolkata.
The estimated cost of the project is Rs 200 crore. The institutes will be set up over the next five years.
The move has been made to bridge the gap between demand and supply of trained manpower for the domestic pharma industry.
Reports in Financial Express say the chemicals and fertiliser ministry has drafted a cabinet note to this effect, which will shortly be put up for discussion and approval.
The Planning Commission has allocated Rs 10 crore towards the project and the balance fund would be mobilised through public-private partnership (PPP) model.
There is a shortfall of over 800 trained professionals per annum in the pharma industry, which is considered to be the sunrise sector.
There are about 5,000 masters students in pharmaceutical science who graduate from 110 post-graduate colleges in the country.
However, most of these colleges do not have specialization and are unfamiliar with cutting edge technologies followed in the developed world.
The proposed National Institutes of Pharmaceutical Education and Research will conduct masters and doctoral programmes in various disciplines of pharmaceutical sciences and carry out programmes for academia, industry and the regulatory authorities.