The Madhya Pradesh government Tuesday ascribed the increase in the number of AIDS cases - from 953 in 2002 to 1,783 this year - to an increase in the number of HIV testing centres.
Replying to a calling attention motion by Congress legislators Sajjan Singh Verma and Govind Singh, on the alleged "misuse of funds" meant for controlling HIV/AIDS, Health Minister Ajay Vishnoi said: "The number of HIV test centres in the state has increased from three in 2000 to 42 this year with the result that more and more cases are being reported now. Still the number of AIDS patients in the state is far lower than several the other states."
Vishnoi also contested the allegation of misuse of funds by the Madhya Pradesh AIDS Control Society through NGOs saying, "The work of only one organisation of Rajgarh district was found to be below standards and it has already been disqualified."
He said of the Rs.451.6 million received by the society from 1998 to 2006, only Rs.22.4 million was distributed to NGOs working in this field.