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Apple pulls plug on India support center

Apple Computer is backing out of plans to establish a large R & D and support facility in India, according to reports.

The Bangalore-based facility, which was revealed by the India press in March, was rumored to employ as many as 1,500 people by the end of this year and grow to over 3,000 employees by the end of 2007.

Apple inducted the facility in April and began operations with a staff of 30 people under the name Apple Services India Pvt Ltd, according to the India Times. The Apple subsidiary was slated to expand rapidly into a massive tech support and software development facility.

But according to the report, on May 29 Apple announced plans to lay off all current employees as it was \"reevaluating its operations and has thought of pulling back its Indian operations\".

Apple reportedly offered the employees a severance package of two months salary and plans to settle all claims on June 9.

\"We have re-evaluated our plans and have decided to put our planned support centre growth in other countries,\" said Apple spokesmen Steve Dowling.

The decision to nix the Indian support center could have ties to a couple of recent real estate acquisitions by Apple in United States.

In February, the Mac maker purchased a 107,000-square-foot Tier IV data center in Newark, Calif. for an estimated $45 million to $50 million. Originally built for MCI WorldCom, the elaborate facility is infused with the highest levels of redundancy and security. A reason for the acquisition has never been reported.

More recently, the company announced plans build a new, 50-acre campus about a mile from its present headquarters in Cupertino, Calif. It\'s expected to take three to four years to design and build the complex that will accommodate 3,000 to 3,500 employees.