Cabinet approves amendment for HIV/AIDS Bill: Reports

The Union Cabinet has approved to introduce the official amendments to the HIV and AIDS (Prevention and Control) Bill, 2014 today. The decision was given among several others that the Cabinet ratified in the meeting.

The HIV and AIDS Bill, 2014 have been drafted to safeguard the rights of people living with HIV and affected by HIV.  The Bill also aims to enhance the health care services for HIV-related testing, treatment and clinical research.

It prohibits any specific acts of discrimination by the state or any other person against HIV affected person or those who are living with the people. The Bill also prohibits any individual from publishing information or advocating feelings of hatred against HIV positive people and who are with them.

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“Every person in the care and custody of the state shall have the right to HIV prevention, testing, treatment and counselling services,” stated the government.

According to the statement, those who are between the age of 12-18 years with sufficient maturity in understanding and managing the things of his/her HIV/AIDS-affected family can act as the guardian for their siblings who are minors.

The bill which was proposed in the last days of UPA (United Progressive Alliance) government has approved by the current government. As per the reports, the Cabinet has also approved two MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) in the meeting.

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One is between India and European Union (EU) on Water Corporation, and other is with Afro-Asian Rural Development Organisation (AARDO) for capacity building in the rural development. The Bill has made obligatory to central and state governments to provide Antiretroviral Therapy and Management to the opportunistic infections.

There is approximately 21 lakh people are estimated to be living with HIV in India. The meeting was attended by the Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Sushma Swaraj, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar and others.