Published: Tuesday 15 June 1999

United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) will provide a total of US $300 for child welfare programmes in India. An agreement, signed by Kiran Aggarwal, secretary department of women and child development and Alan Court, UNICEF representative in India, will be operative till December 2002. The objective of the programme is reducing low birth weight rate, maternal mortality rate and child labour. The agreement gives special attention to developing time-bound, cost-effective practical solutions to reduce disparities in achievements of children across regions, gender, class and communities. The Northeastern states, Jammu and Kashmir and other smaller states that have not received adequate attention will be given priority.

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) will provide a fresh grant worth around US $ 3 million over the next three tears in support of collaborative initiatives addressing key development aspects of HIV/AIDS epidemic in South and Southwest Asia. "The challenge of today is that the HIV epidemic is now a major development problem with implications far beyond just the health sector," said Brenda Gael McSweeney, UNDP representative in India.

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