25 years of HIV in India

The first case of HIV/AIDS in India was detected in Chennai sex workers in 1986, triggering shocked disbelief among health professionals which ultimately transformed into panic and then hopeless resignation. "We never thought that HIV would ever visit India and take us on,” said Dr Ramesh Paranjape, Director of the National AIDS Research Institute, Indian Council of Medical Research. “At that time HIV was considered to be a disease of the western world and we had nothing to do with it. But slowly with more and more cases testing positive for the virus, it became a grave concern for us too."

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