Uneasy facts

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 10/8/2018 11:53:45 AM IST

 It was quite a blow to the concept that music is essential to connect with youth in order to get their attention so as make them pursue a desired goal. This common idea, that youth love music and vice versa, was the driving force behind Nagaland State AIDS Control Society (NSACS) roping in some government-sponsored musicians for raising awareness on HIV/AIDS. However, the annual event has come under close scrutiny as many say that there has been no visible positive impact with the State which has been witnessing rise in HIV cases. It is not known how much money has been spent or is being spent, to carter rock bands to various districts and the performance fees etc but what has been revealed by a person living with HIV (PLHIV) and also involved with HIV/AIDS programme is strongly discordant. The PLHIV alleged that NSACS had also not carried out any assessment of the impact of such annual events and urged that a scientific study of its impact vis-à-vis spread of HIV&AIDS was a must. The entire issue of HIV/AIDS programme in the state has submerged by shows and academic exercises in seminars and workshops. Music rock bands may have been used in the western countries to highlight the plight of those living with HIV/AIDS and to raise funds. In the state, music is also being used to reach out to the youth and inform them about HIV/AIDS. The onus on music for youths has to be rethought because the focus appears to have been lost. At times the overkill on ‘music and youth’ stuff has actually done little service to either. When it comes to HIV/AIDS, those living with it lament on lack of care facilities which can only mean that more is spend on awareness and less on care and treatment. According to an official source, Nagaland now ranks third in the country with 1.15 % of its population being affected while Mizoram tops the list (2.04%) and Manipur (1.43%) comes in second. It may be recalled that in 2013 Nagaland State Aids Control Society (NSACS) claimed that the prevalence rate had marginally come down from 1.20 % till 2010 to 0.78% in 2013.Today it points to rise in HIV cases adding a complete contradiction to the claims. Another very interesting point is the case with Mizoram which had never figured in earlier among HIV prevalent states. Today, Mizoram tops the list as having the highest HIV prevalence among all states in India with 2.04% of its population recorded as HIV positive. The other interesting point is that Manipur, which used to earn the dubious distinction as having the highest HIV prevalence in the country has currently been pushed to second place with 1.43% of its population recorded as HIV positive. It is clear that HIV has not diminished nor stopped in its tracks despite so many decades of awareness campaigns and strategies in the region. It will also be helpful if states in the region that continue to under report on HIV also take a serious effort to reflect the facts. This will be helpful in knowing the depth of the problem and the consequent threat on the future generations.

Launched on December 3,1990. Nagaland Post is the first and highest circulated newspaper of Nagaland state. Nagaland Post is also the first newspaper in Nagaland to be published in multi-colour.

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