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Rally to Mark Global AIDS Week

A rally and a candlelight vigil will be held in the city on the occasion of the global AIDS week of Action 2009 on May 20. The event is an initiative of Wake Up Pune, a coalition of non–governmental organisations (NGOs) and citizens working towards the spread of HIV/AIDS awareness in the city.

The rally, which will start from two points Golibar Maidan and Sassoon Hospital at 5.30 pm, will end at M G road with a candlelight vigil. The rally is expected to be attended by around 1,000 participants.

The event at M G road will start from 7 pm and will comprise cultural programmes by Sahara and MADS bands and speeches by eminent people. Shabana Patel, general secretary, Mumbai Network of Positive People, will be the chief speaker for the evening.

During the AIDS week, young activists around the city will set up information centres in malls and multiplexes, and organise poster and slogan competitions. They will also request the people to show their support by wearing the global HIV support symbol the red ribbon as a bindi or a badge. Youngsters will also be requested to join the HIV Bootcamp’. The bootcamp is a Wake Up Pune initiative which acts as a forum for young people to become AIDS activists and become a part of the campaign.

The vigil aims to break the stigma, discrimination and myths surrounding the disease and remembering those who have lost their lives due to the virus. It will also serve as a reminder to the policy makers to keep their promises and do more to control the disease.

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Source: Times of India

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