Report: India's HIV-Positive Seek Potential Partners by Placing Ads in Newspapers
May 16, 2005
A growing number of HIV-infected men and women in India are seeking partners through newspaper and Web site advertisements that acknowledge their health status, according to a recent report in the Indian Express newspaper. D.M. Saxena, additional project director of Gujarat State AIDS Control Society, said that during the past few years, HIV-positive people have come to be better accepted in society.
According to government figures, India has more than 5 million people with HIV/AIDS, the second-highest number of infections after South Africa. Experts say the official estimate leaves out people who have HIV without knowing or reporting it.
H. Raj, who runs a matrimonial service, said some people do not mind advertising their HIV status but prefer not to reveal their identity before they meet potential partners. "Being HIV-positive is not [as] much a taboo as it was earlier," Raj said. "But we don't directly give away names or addresses, but put the contact numbers of some close relatives."