Shilling, October 22: Almost one in every four sex workers have HIV in Mizoram – the highest in the country – the Sentinel Surveillance, conducted by the National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO), has found.
Meghalaya, the survey found, was the second worst in the country, with 5.94% women having HIV, against the national average of 1.56%, the survey found.
“The number of call girls could not be determined, as their identities are often not revealed,” the officials said.
Mizoram State AIDS Control Society (MSACS) officials said there were 906 female sex workers in the state in 2019-20, up from 851 last year.
Though there were women sex workers in all districts of the state, the majority of them – 90% – were working in the capital, Aizwal. The survey further found that most of the women joined prostitution because of financial problems.
Over 2% of the population in Mizoram have HIV, against the national average of 0.22%, according to project director of MSACS Dr Lalthlengliani.
Quoting the 2017 NACO study, Lalthlengliani said when it came to the percentage of HIV-affected people in the state, Manipur at 1.43%, and Nagaland with 1.15%, were next to Mizoram.
The MSACS director said AIDS has claimed at least 2,000 people in the state since 1990. (TNN)