HIV positive people and organizations working for them on Monday demanded that the HIV/AIDS bill be tabled in Parliament in the upcoming monsoon session. The bill drafted in 2006 has since been pending and is being moved between the Health and law ministries for clearances, they said in a press meet.
Daisy David, an HIV positive person working as an advocacy officer with World Vision India, said activists had approached many political leaders to table the bill since it was drafted in 2006. But the bill was yet to see the light of the day. “Food security bill will be passed. But government does not consider this bill important.”
Reni Jacob, Advocacy Director, World Vision, said the bill provides redressal against discrimination in both public and private sectors and also gives the right to informed consent and confidentiality for testing and treatment.
D Noori, another HIV positive person, said the bill provides access to first, second and third line treatment free of cost.
“First line drugs are available in district headquarter hospitals but there are only four centres providing second line drugs in the State. There are no centres for third line drugs. This bill will make it the responsibility of the government to provide them,” she said.
The bill also has provisions to address vulnerability of women and kids to HIV, including counseling during marriage and protection of children’s property.