This morning, 28 Jan 2009, when I visited the home of the Missionaries of Charity the Sisters who follow the order of Mother Teresa were narrating about the pathetic condition of a little girl, aged about 6, who has been abandoned by her parents as both of them have died of AIDS, leaving her and her parents alive. And the girl is sick with severe malnutrition, and is now admitted at the sister's place. She, luckily, is not infected by the deadly virus. The sisters were telling me that she wants to go back to her home soon. When I enquired about the reason, you just cannot imagine the reply of the girl. "I have to take care of my grand parents!". She is clearly heading towards unsafe survival strategies. She can, as she grows up, end up as a victim of human trafficking and sex-trade. I can feel that. I am not sure if I will be able to help her; and I am not even sure if I will ever meet her again. It raises fundamental questions about human intentions to help one another. To be with the poor. It also makes me reflect on the present situation of the three districts and I serve along with Social Welfare Institute.
The cases of HIV positives in the North Dinajpur, South Dinajpur and Malda districts is increasing at an alarming rate. Last year North Dinajpur district was declared as the district with highest number of HIV cases for any district in India. One of the rural government bodies (Panchayat - a cluster of villages with about a population of 30,000) in South Dinajpur, named Chokbrighu alone has over 100 HIV infected cases !