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26 MAY, 2017 (MAINS)



Q1. Do you second the view that the passage of HIV and AIDS (Prevention and Control) Bill, 2014 would help prevent stigma and discrimination against the people living with AIDS? Critically analyze. (200 words)


Please write the answer in comments section

  • Ashish

    The HIV and AIDS (Prevention and Control) Bill 2017 was recently passed by Lok Sabha.
    It allows the person the right to reside in their house, besides making the discrimination against persons living with the virus a punishable offence
    However doubts have been cast regarding its ability to prevent stigma and discrimination against people living with AIDS
    There are many rumours associated with the diseases like it spreads even on having contact with a people
    Legislation cannot curb the ignorance and people’s misgivings
    Cultural factors
    There is taboo associated with sexual diseases in our society
    Given that people are still reluctant to visit a Police station for filing ordinary complaints it is not much difficult to guess whether a person affected with virus will go to report a case of discrimination
    Insurance industry has been allowed to use actuarial calculations to limit access to products to people with HIV
    Regional variations in access to diagnosis and treatment
    Though changes in societal attitude take time however a beginning has been made with enactment of this progressive legislation

  • Osho Korde

    • The Bill is a long-awaited legislation that seeks to end societal stigma and discrimination of people living with HIV (PLHIVs) and ensure their right to privacy.
    • This would mean that it is now obligatory for the Central and State governments to provide for anti-retroviral therapy (ART) and arrange for the management of risk reduction of vulnerable populations.
    • The legislation prohibits arbitrary and discriminatory acts by the state against PLHIVs and their families.
    • The HIV/AIDS Bill, therefore, has the foundations of civil liberties at its centre, providing for positive and negative obligations for the State towards approximately 21 lakh PLHIVs in India
    • the Bill does not confer powers to civil courts in relation to employment. Thus, if the person is not employed in the entities which are “State”— as defined under the Industrial Disputes Act — s/he cannot seek employment or reinstatement if s/he has been discriminated. In such cases, a person can only go the civil court and claim damages.
    • Another crucial flaw deals with the needle safety programme. The government has proposed amendment to Clause 22 of the Bill, by deleting all references to needle and syringe exchange. This clause of the Bill was aimed to protect volunteers and patients from illegality— as providing sterile needles is considered a crime and PLHIV and health workers can be picked up for aiding and abetting the unlawful use of drugs.

    Though some changes are necessary but although present initiatives are also well versed to prevent stigma and discrimination against the people living with AIDS.