UK PM announces 825 million Pound package for India

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New Delhi, Jan 20 (UNI) British Prime Minister Gordon Brown today announced another 825 million pounds aid package for development in India over the next three years.

Of that, up to 500 million pounds is expected to be spent on health and education.

This will help provide 300,000 more teachers and another 300,000 classrooms--ensuring that by 2011, four million more children--half of them girls--will be able to go to school.

''Over the last few years, India has made great progress in tackling poverty and sustaining economic development. But some grave challenges remain. The UK is keen to play its part and work in partnership with India to fight poverty. That is why I am pleased to announce this substantial package of support to help make a better future for India's poorest,'' he said while announcing the funding.

The British Premier arrived here this afternoon on a two-day visit, primarily to attend the Fourth India-UK Summit.

British Secretary of State for International Development, Douglas Alexander, who was also present, said ''without India getting on track, the world will fail to meet the Millennium Development Goals.

That is why the UK contribution--which accounts for one-third of all aid to India-is welcomed.'' He said that past UK support had helped raise primary school enrolment rates to 94 per cent and provided water and sanitation for 10 million slum dwellers.

The 825 million pound contribution would continue to benefit India's poorest by improving health (including undernutrition) and education for all,'' Mr Alexander added.

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