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UP School allegedly expels students with HIV+ve status

Aug 25, 2009 08:26 AM IST India India

Allahabad: An eight-year-old boy was allegedly thrown out of a government primary school on grounds that he was HIV +ve.

The boy's three-year-old brother and five-year-old sister have also reportedly been meted out similar treatment by the government school.

The school authorities from Belamundi village of Allahabad argue that the attendance in the school had dramatically dropped since the week that other students' parents learnt of the children's HIV+ve status.

The school children who are said to be HIV +ve have already lost their parents to the battle against AIDS. The school principal says that he had to take the step of shutting out the said HIV+ve children from school after parents of other children exhibited anger and anxiety over their wards studying alongside the affected children.

This is not the first time in the country that children with HIV+ve status have allegedly been faced with forced expulsion from school.

Similar discriminatory incidences in the past were:

  • Eight students in Latur, Maharashtra were allegedly asked by their school authorities to leave after parents of other children protested. CNN-IBN's coverage of that injustice forced the state to intervene.

  • In 2007, five HIV+ve students in Kottayam, Kerala were dismissed after other parents refused to send their children to the school. They had to battle their way back to primary school.

  • In 2003 HIV+ siblings Bensy and Benson in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala were ostracised from four successive campuses of schools. The state government was forced to admit them to a lower primary school after they threatened to fast unto death.

Meanwhile, Allahabad MP Rewati Raman Singh has come out in support of the HIV+ve kids.

Singh said, "They should be readmitted. If the school denies to do so, then it should be not a recognised school anymore. Large scale propaganda must ne launched to educate people about HIV and AIDS. People should be made aware on details about how HIV-AIDS infection happens and what are the reasons for that."