Hundreds march in Orissa for AIDS awareness

December 2nd, 2008 - 12:06 am ICT by IANS  

Bhubaneswar, Dec 1 (IANS) Hundreds of people, including college students, children and women, Monday marched on the streets of Bhubaneswar to create public awareness about dreaded disease AIDS which kills thousands of people across the world every year. Orissa State AIDS Control Society (OSACS) organised the rally to mark the World AIDS Day in collaboration with international NGO ActionAid.

Taking an oath to make people aware about AIDS and HIV, rally participant Rohit Das, a student, said they were worried as the disease was spreading fast.

With ‘Lead, Empower and Deliver’ the main theme of this year’s World AIDS Day, the participants marched about 2 km, chanting slogans like ‘Stop AIDS - Keep the promise’.

“Youth like me have to take the lead and empower people about its consequences. Unless we are aware and make others aware, the disease can’t be eradicated,” Das told IANS.

“The way the number of AIDS patients is increasing, we need more awareness,” Santosh Padhy, an ActionAid official said.

India ranks third in the world in numbers of AIDS patients. In Orissa, the situation is more alarming. The disease has already killed at least 815 people while 11,160 people have been infected, official sources said.

OSACS and ActionAid also felicitated at least six persons from various sectors for their contribution to the society for creating awareness about AIDS and HIV.

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