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Home > News > PTI

Legal system sympathetic to HIV/AIDS people

December 08, 2003 10:02 IST

India is among the countries with the highest amount of HIV/AIDS-related litigation, however, a United Nations praises its legal system for exhibiting sensitivity towards People Living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA).

"Apart from US and Australia, the highest number of HIV/AIDS-related litigation has perhaps taken place in India," the UNDP's Regional Human Development Report: HIV/AIDS and Development in South Asia 2003, said.

In many cases, courts have passed orders of 'suppression' of identity so as to enable the concerned persons to take recourse to the legal system without fear of being identified and stigmatised.

Citing an example, the report said in November 2002, the Delhi high court sought explanations from both the Union and the Delhi governments for the refusal of several hospitals in the national capital to treat an HIV-positive person.

Explanations were also sought from the several hospitals where the person had gone for treatment, only to be turned away.

In another case, some lawyers had challenged the termination of the services of a worker, on the ground of being HIV-positive, in 1997. The worker was reinstated, the report said.

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