Goa links HIV test to marriage registration | india | Hindustan Times
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Goa links HIV test to marriage registration

Goa government has decided to make HIV test mandatory for registration of marriage.

india Updated: Mar 17, 2006 18:54 IST
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Goa government on Friday decided to make HIV test mandatory for registration of marriage.

"We have decided to amend the Goa Public Health Act making HIV test mandatory before registration of marriage," State Health Minister Dayanand Narvekar told reporters after the cabinet meeting.

The government has also decided to "throw open this amendment for public debate" and various NGOs and other individuals can give their suggestions in this matter, said Narvekar, briefing reporters on the cabinet decision in presence of Chief Minister Pratapsingh Rane.

He said that extensive debate on this amendment would be held in and outside the state for over two months.

"There should be a national debate in which issues like morality and personal privacy are discussed before giving final shape to the amendment," Narvekar said.

The amendment would be put before the State Legislative Assembly in the coming session in July, he said, adding, "nitty-gritty of this amendment would be finalised only after discussions."

If amendment comes through, Goa would be the first state in the country to have mandatory HIV test before marriage, Narvekar added.

In yet another proposed amendment to the Act, the government has decided to offer free medicine "to cancer and trauma patients who are treated in state-owned Goa Medical College Hospital."