Karnataka's first Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) will be established in Dharwad district, the union ministry of human resources development said on Tuesday.

"We received an official communication from the ministry that Dharwad has been chosen over Raichur and Mysuru," The Times of India quoted BJP MLA Aravind Bellad as saying.

The Karnataka government had suggested three cities – Dharwad, Raichur and Mysuru – to the Centre to establish the first IIT in Karanataka. Bengaluru, Hasan, Shivamogga and Belagavi had also pitched for the state's first IIT but the state government did not recomment their names.

The selection of Dharwad is said to be political as politicians, such as BJP Karnataka politicians, including union minister HN Ananth Kumar, Opposition leader in the Karnataka Assembly Jagadish Shettar and state BJP president Prahlad Joshi had lobbied for it.

Karnataka business chambers, academicians, politicians, social activists, student organisations and others had been pressurising the Modi government for setting up an IIT in Dharwad. In the 1990s, the then Union HRD Minister SR Bommai had appealed to the Centre for the same.

However, the appeal remained unheard for several years, until the NDA government declared an IIT for Karnataka in its Union Budget in 2015.