Back on April 11, the Parliament had passed the HIV and AIDS (Prevention and Control) Bill with Lok Sabha giving nod to the legislation. On March 21, the Rajya Sabha passed the bill.
The bill provides for the prevention and control of the disease and protection of human rights of those affected by it. The bill prohibits any kind of discrimination against such people on ground of treatment, employment and workplace.
“It will empower the people affected with the disease by giving them legal sanctity,” Health Minister J P Nadda said in his reply to the debate in the lower house before the bill was passed.
“The government will provide free treatment to the people infected with HIV. The ministry will soon come out with a new test and treat policy for the people living with HIV for providing free treatment to them,” he said dubbing the bill as patient-centric and progressive in nature.
Nadda said the government has spent Rs 2000 crore on Anti Retroviral Therapy drugs for such patients last year, while 22,000 testing facilities for HIV and AIDS are functional in the country.
He also appreciated the Indian pharmaceutical companies for manufacturing affordable drugs for the treatment of the disease.