Statesman News Service
GUWAHATI, Jan. 31. — The stigma attached to AIDS has proved nearly as dangerous as the disease for a four-year-old patient who cannot get into any school. He was born an HIV-positive in a small Upper Assam town called Namrup. His parents have failed to get him admitted to any school due largely to the fact that he is a victim of insensitive reporting in the media. Some local newspapers and a television network gave him away using his real name, resulting in his expulsion from a school. His parents were forced to escape to Guwahati where people turned out to be just as hostile as Namrup’s citizens.
“ The virus is in the victim’s body but it is our society which seems sick,” says an anti-AIDS campaigner. The state-run Assam AIDS Control Society has said it will get the boy admitted to a government school when he is six years old. The Assam State Human Rights Commission is planning a suo motu case to secure justice for the boy denied an entry by private schools violating rules and regulations related to AIDS victims.