Empowering the common man to be able to demand their right from Government will be our main aim said Vasavya Mahila Mandali (VMM) Secretary G. Reshma on Thursday.

The VMM in association with India HIV/AIDS Alliance had been working to improve the sexual health and reproductive rights of people living with HIV in India (PLHIV). A special project named Koshish had been started for this purpose a year back. “This is a three-year programme and has been initiated in five districts all over the State”, said the VMM Secretary. In each district we are partnered with a district level HIV positive network she informed.

“All people should be treated as individuals and no discrimination should be shown especially in medical tests and treatments,” said India HIV/AIDS Alliance Director Sonal Mehata. Government calculates the need for contraceptives basing only on the number of married couples in the country so the actual need is not properly met she informed the press.

Increase in the access to antiretroviral treatment had led to a subsequent increase in longevity in life of PLHIV she said. Therefore it is imminent for PLHIV to demand their proper right to reproduce and start a family she added.

“Many people are not even aware that there is a separate right catering to the reproduction of a person so creating awareness had been our main objective this year”, she further added.

VMM had been creating awareness all over the State about how even PLHIV can start a family and live a normal life for the past one year. VMM helps not only PLHIV but also works towards improvement in living conditions of sexworkers, transgender and drug abusers.