The recent publication of the UN report shows staggering figures on the spread of AIDS and HIV world wide, which also included India. The Indian Government thought it was taking a very positive step by installing 'Anytime Condom" vending machines in commonly accessed public places. This included places like the bus stands, railway stations and public bathrooms especially in well educated states like Kerala.
However, surprisingly this bold step by the government has to some extent backfired. The step has raised anger in the Muslim women's organization (Jama'at - e_Islami Hind Kerla) who strongly feel that, the introduction of condom vending machines has degraded women in the society further and increased the possibility of sexual assaults on them by anti-social elements.
The President of the women's wing K.K Fathima Suhra from Kerala in a statement said that, "Whether such round the clock machines could effectively prevent AIDS is only a secondary question. We're quite sorry that our Health Minister himself inaugurated the condom vending machine in the state."
The organization feels that with the easy access to discounted and easily available condoms would also increase the risk of women going astray. "Earlier, women were not as open in leading a promiscuous life in fear that they may get pregnant. Now they don't have to fear with the condom vending machines ready at every corner", K.K Fathima Suhra explained.
In her opinion, people have already getting sexually provoked through the various presentations in the media. " The only way to prevent AIDS is to infuse moral values in the society." Concluded Ms. K.K Fathima Suhra
However, this outcry by the women's wing does not provide solution to the problem of increasing AIDS victims and unwanted teenage pregnancies in the country.
The government's strong move maybe the only positive step forward in creating the vital awareness in the society on the use of condoms and proper protection during sexual intercourse.
The instillation of strong moral values is a stride that perhaps organizations, women wing's and individuals have to take and create the "better, morally intact Indian society". However, with the current scenario the government has to find ways to work around the problem, we as a country face. After all, neither the Indian government nor the public want to lose the fight against the spread of AIDS. This silent epidemic spreading around the globe has already entered into our homes. And it is time to sound the alarm!!
Medindia on AIDS:
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