To fight against the menace of HIV and AIDS in Naga society, Network of Naga People Living with HIV and AIDS (NNP+) in collaboration with Dimapur Baptist Women Union on Friday organized advocacy campaign on HIV and AIDS “Together we can-a response” with stakeholders of Dimapur I, II and III on Thursday at IMC Hall, Dimapur supported by Legislators Forum on AIDS, Nagaland.
The campaign was attended by various leaders of Naga Council, Dimapur, NPMHR, police officials, medical officers, church leaders and various leaders of civil societies, students, members of NNP+ and DNP+.
Delivering the welcome note, Deputy Commissioner, Dimapur Maongwati Aier asserted the reason behind the spread of HIV and AIDS in Nagaland was mostly due to ‘heterogeneous sexual relationship’ than by sharing syringe and injection needles.
Sharing that in Bangkok customers were offered free condoms while buying commodities, Maowngwati urged the legislators to provide free condoms people inorder to prevent the spread of HIV and AIDS. He also encouraged the people not to discriminate but to care people with HIV and AIDS as they too are human like anyone in the society.
Responding to the challenge of HIV and AIDS threat “Together we can”, Imtisunget Jamir, MLA called upon all the leaders, NGOs, individuals and positive people to work for the issues affecting the society. He said the responsibility of the people was to prevent the disease and see what could be done and not discriminate the people living with HIV and AIDS.
MLA I. Imkong in his response “Together we can” encouraged the gathering to take precautionary measures to prevent the spread of HIV and AIDS. He said the challenge against HIV and AIDS in Naga society could not be fought due to people’s attitude and that the legislators have taken the responsibility to take up the challenge and further encouraged everyone not to shy away to talk about the use of condoms.
In his short speech Dimapur Municipal Council chairperson, Khekaho Assumi appealed the members of NNP+ and NSACS to include the DMC councilors as partners to work together in fighting against the epidemic.
State co-ordinator, LFA-UNAIDS, also gave a brief note on “Why advocacy on HIV and AIDS, Chongtie, president NNP+ shared on “Giving a human face to epidemic”, Ella Mary, IPC coordinator, OSD Nagaland on stigma and discrimination and CMO Dimapur also spoke on the occasion.
According to the report, ever since the first detection of HIV case in Nagaland in 1990 till July 2009, a total number of 8369 people were detected positive and around 466 died with AIDS related issues ranking the 6th position in India and second to Manipur in North-East India.
In district wise, Dimapur topped the first place beating Tuensang district where 1822 people were tested positive out of which 850 people were enrolled in DNP+.