United Nations: India has given over $4 million to the UN Democracy Fund (UNDEF), bringing to nearly $30 million its total contribution to the entity launched in 2005 by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the then US President George Bush for promotion of democratic values.
India's Permanent Representative to the UN Hardeep Singh Puri handed over a cheque for $4.17 million on Friday to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.
Ban thanked India for its consistent support to the UNDEF, saying he was pleased to receive the contribution from the "greatest democracy".
The fund, which was initiated as a result of a partnership between India and the US, was launched jointly by Singh, Bush and former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan in New York in September 2005.
India is the second largest contributor to the UNDEF, having contributed $29.71 million to it so far. At the inception of the fund, India had contributed $10 million followed by contributions of $5 million each in 2008, 2009 and 2011.
India considers the fund to be an effective instrument for the promotion of democratic values and processes and has played a prominent role in the UNDEF as a member of the Advisory Board, its apex governing body.
UNDEF supports projects that strengthen the voice of civil society, promote human rights and encourage participation of all groups in democratic processes.
Since its inception, UNDEF has funded about 400 projects in over 100 countries, bringing total disbursement to about $110 million.