In India, a National Human Rights Commission has been established and a National AIDS prevention and control policy have been formulated.
In order to implement an effective response and control measure the government adopted following right based strategy.
1. The Government will review periodically and reform criminal laws and correctional system to ensure that they are consistent with international human right obligation and are not misused in the context of HIV/AIDS targeted against vulnerable groups.
2. The Government will strengthen anti-discrimination and other protective laws that protect vulnerable groups, people living with HIV \ AIDS and people with disabilities from discrimination in the public and private sectors, ensuring privacy, confidentially and ethics in research involving human subjects emphasize education and conciliation and provide for speedy and effective administration and civil remedies.
3. The Government will ensure widespread availability of qualitative prevention measures and services, adequate HIV prevention and care information and services.
4. The Government will support services that will educate people affected by HIV/AIDS about their rights, provide legal services to enforce these rights and people expertise on HIV related legal issues.
5. Government will promote distribution of creative, educational, training and media programs explicitly designed to change the attitude of community towards discrimination and somatization associated with HIV/AIDS.
6- The Government will in collaboration with and through the community, promote supportive and enabling environment for women, children and other vulnerable groups and inequalities through community dialogues, specially designed social and health service and support to community groups.
7. The Government will co-operate with all relevant programs and agencies of United Nations System, to share knowledge and experience concerning HIV related human rights issues and would ensure effective mechanisms to protect human rights in the context of HIV/AIDS at international levels.
With the current absence of vaccines and drugs to prevent or cure HIV infection, programs must emphasize behavioural changes. Health providers, include all family providers, need training in assessment and counseling, including in the choice of appropriate family planning methods to reduce the risk of HIV \ AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases. Wherever possible family planning programs should also include facilities for the diagnosis and treatment of referral for common STDs, recognizing that many STDs increase the risk of AIDS transmission
It is also hypothesized that AIDS is a man made epidemic produced by genetically engineered laboratory produced by virus. AIDS itself does not kill humans. The death occurs due to attack by other diseases because of the weakening of immune system.
Even dreaded disease like cancer can easily develop in the HIV infected person. Consumption of alcohol is understood to increase the susceptibility to infection and progression of AIDS.
Women and child welfare
Women and children are usually the main targets, who suffer in a number of ways mainly because they are weaker, helpless and economically dependent.
Women usually suffer gender discrimination and devaluation at home, at work place, in matrimony, in inheritance, in public life and power, particularly in developing countries.
The statistical data provided by the Ministry of Women and Child Development is an eye opener that glorifies the celebrated culture of our country.
The exceptionally high number of cases of abduction, dowry death, rape, domestic violence, criminal offences and mental torture to women is something that needs immediate attention and reforms in the interest of the women. Women are often the worst victims of communal enmities.
The human rights of women are violated too often in a male dominated patriarchal society. Thus, there is an urgent need for policy reforms and more stringent legislation as well as educational and legal awareness amongst women for checking the atrocities and injustice towards her.
There are now many ‘Women Groups’ who have actively take up women welfare issues and legally constituted “Women Cells’ that exists mostly everywhere and fight for protection of women rights and dignity.
There is a full- fledged Ministry for Women and Child Development whose sole aim is to work for welfare and upliftment of women encompassing family planning, health care, education and awareness. There is a need for complete transformation and reorientation of social ethics for restoring the dignity, status equality and respect for women.
Women are also the victims of capitalism, development and environment. The exploitive nature of capitalist development not only affects the natural environment but the traditional, social, cultural and family life of women.
After losing the forest and getting rehabilitated from their native places, men fold usually migrate to towns in search of some job while women are left behind to look after the family and household with little resources.
Development projects like mining play havoc with the life of women. The National Network for Women and Mining (NNWM) with about 20 groups in different in different mining states of India is rightly fighting for a “gender audit” of India’s mining companies. The displaced women are the worst affected, as they do not get any compensation and are totally dependent upon the males for wages.
The displaced women driven out from their land-based work are forced to take up marginalized work which is highly unorganized work which is highly unorganized and often socially humiliating. The NNWM is now working for rights of women over natural resources, resettlement and compensation issues.
Besides the government initiatives there are number, of non-governmental organization (NGOs) mostly as “Mahila Mandals ” to create awareness amongst women of remote village even to empower them, train them, educate them and help them to become economically self- dependent. On the international level, the United Nations Decade for Women (1975-85) witnessed inclusion of several women related issues on international agenda.
The CEDAW (International Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women, 1979) has been the landmark outcome of the decade to be accepted as an international standard for the protection and promotion of women’s human rights and socio-economic uppliftment. It is however, most important for all women, in the mainstream, tribals, refugees and down-trodden to be educated about the issues.
Children are considered to be the assets of a society. But, ironically, the statistical figures tell us that about a million babies, out of 21 million born every year in India are abandoned soon after their birth due to different socio-economic reasons.
Around 20 million children in our country are estimated to be working as child labors, some of them in various hazardous industries like the match industry, firework industry, brassware industry and pottery industry.
Poverty is the main reason to drive these children into long hours of work is miserable, unhealthy conditions and yet they do not get the minimum nutritive food, what to talk of educational and recreational facilities, which their childhood rights.
The UN General Assembly in 1959 adopted the Declaration of the Rights of Child. After the UN convention of Rights of Child, it became International Law in the year 1990, consisting of’ 54 articles and a set of international standards and measures to promote and protect the well being of children in a society.
The law defines right of the child to survival, protection, development and participation. The right to survival emphasizes on adequately good standards of living, good nutrition and health. The right to protection means freedom from exploitation, abuse, inhuman treatment and neglect.
The right to development ensures access to education, early childhood care and support, social security and right to leisure and recreation. The right to participation means freedom of thought, conscience and religion, and appropriate information to the child.
The World Summit on Children, held on September 30, 1990 has focused agenda for the well being of the children targeted to be achieved in the beginning of the new millennium. India is also a signatory to the World Declaration on Survival, Protection and Development of Children.
A national plan of action for children has been formulated by the Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD), Government of India in which a strategic plan has been formulated for children’s welfare in the priority areas of health, education, nutrition, clean and safe drinking water, sanitation and environment.
Universalization of effective access to at least primary level schooling, special emphasis on girl child’s education including health and nutrition, up gradation of home- based skills, mid-day meals scheme, expansion of early childhood development activities including low-cost family based involvements are some of the important actions envisaged.
Children are the most affected due to environmental pollution. They consume more water, food and air than adults, hence more susceptible to any environmental contamination” says one of the scientific reports of Center for Science and Environment (CSE), New Delhi. Water borne diseases are the biggest threat to children, affecting around 6 million children in India.
Childhood cancer rates are also increasing by 6% every year. Even the growing foetus in the mother’s womb is not safe and free from adverse effects of environmental toxins. It is time to work for a secure and cleaner environment so as to give our children a cleaner and safer world to live in.