Gates pledges $23 mn to fight AIDS in India | india | Hindustan Times
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Gates pledges $23 mn to fight AIDS in India

The funds, to be disbursed over the next three years, will enhance the capacity of the government's HIV prevention response.

india Updated: Oct 26, 2006 09:32 IST

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has pledged $23 million to help fight HIV/AIDS in India, which has the world's highest number of people living with the disease, the Health Ministry said.

The funds, to be disbursed over the next three years, will enhance the capacity of the government's HIV prevention response and will target high-risk groups such as homosexuals, prostitutes and drug users, a statement said.

The money is part of an additional $58 million committed to the foundation's 'Avahan' project - a $258 million five-year prevention programme launched in 2003.

According to the United Nations, 5.7 million Indians are living with the virus. But activists say the true figure may be far higher as social stigma forces many of those infected with the virus to keep their status a secret.