In a bid to kick-start the stalled process of raising global funds for biodiversity conservation, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh committed $50 million (over Rs. 264 crore) for what he called the ‘Hyderabad Pledge’ as India takes over the two-year presidency of the Convention on Biological Diversity.

This sum would “strengthen the institutional mechanism for biodiversity conservation in India. We will use these funds to enhance the technical and human capabilities of our national and State mechanisms to attain CBD objectives,” Dr. Singh told delegates at the inauguration of the high-level segment of the U.N. summit on Tuesday. “We have also earmarked funds to promote similar capacity building in developing countries.”