Apple CEO Steve Jobs is expected to visit India next month.

A local press report states the Apple co-founder will fly across to Bangalore to open Apple's new research and development centre there.

As Macworld UK reported in February, Apple is launching an R&D and tech support centre in Bangalore. Apple plans to hire 3,000 people there by 2007.

The report observes that a visit to India is a rare one: the only Asian country Jobs has officially visited is Japan.

However, while he was still "joining the dots" the younger Jobs developed a "special affinity to India", the report says, observing: "He had spent four years in the 70s as a 'hippie spiritual tourist' visiting holy places in the country."