Thursday, May 26, 2005

HIV in India

We've written previously about HIV in India . Now we read, on BBC, a curious headline: Clinton lauds India Aids campaign.

India has gone from being the world's number one worry to being the world's number one marvel, Mr. Clinton said in the Indian capital Delhi.

Why such applause? Because, per newly published data, initial estimates showed only 28,000 people became infected in 2004, compared to 520,000 in 2003. If true, this would indeed be a staggering development.

Forgive us for injecting cynicism here, but Indians would be wise to resist premature self-congratulation based on this curious data. Indeed, the new Aids figures were released by India's National Aids Control organization (Naco). But Health Minister Dr Anbumani Ramadoss said there would be an independent assessment of the estimates before a final figure could be released.



Rajagopal said...

Ramadoss was on NDTV last night to discuss this issue. He said this was just one data point and we need to see the figures for the next 2-3 years to see if this is truly a trend. ANother thing which he said was that the figures quoted were estimates and that the actual registered numbered of cases was like 150,000. Even for a society were a terrible stigma is attached to AIDS, this ratio of actual to estimated of 1:35 seems large.

Primary Red said...

Ramadoss is a Doctor himself, isn't he?

Rajagopal said...

Yes, he is. In his spare time, he is turning out to be quite the linguistic chauvinist. His party (PMK) and another local tamil party have made it their aim to abolish English from public signs and movie titles etc. They vehemently opposed Kamal titling his movie Mumbai Xpress. Kamal, to his credit(even though he is a communist, credit is to be given where it is due), would have none of it. These lingo-chauvinists however have said nary a word about SUN TV, owned by Karunanidhi's family, presumably because he is an ally and because it is likely to be laughed out of sight. Is there a point to all this?. No, it is just a rant.


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