Kerala Government red in the face
Kerala may be shining in the education and the social sectors, but it is no better than any other state in dealing with HIV positive patients. The treatment meted out to them sometime verges on “torture”.
Five HIV positive children — in the age-group 4-10 — were thrown out of their school in Kottayam on Wednesday after parents of other children threatened to pull out their wards because of the stigma attached to the disease.
The orphanage where they stay had kept their HIV positive status under wraps.
But the participation in a programme on World Aids Day on December 1 and the consequent splashing of their photographs in newspapers proved to their undoing. The ostracised five — a pre-nursery boy and four girls studying in class II and IV respectively — are now confined to their rooms in the orphanage.
“When authorities of the Mar Dionecios LP School in Pampady insisted, I asked them to give the exact reason in writing. I tried my best to convince them, but they said that their continued presence would spell doom for the school,” secretary of Asha Kiran orphanage, P.C. Yohanan, explained. A red-faced Left Front government rushed a high-level team to Kottayam. “I am going there today. We will begin a door-to-door campaign in Pampady to spread awareness,” state Health Minister P.K. Sreemathy told the “Hindustan Times”. Two other children, Akshara and Ananthu, were expelled from a school in Malabar last year. firstname.lastname@example.org