Dimapur, May 15: NNP+ and ARK Foundation, on the occasion of the International AIDS Candlelight Memorial 2021 set to be held on Sunday May 16, has appealed to the people of Nagaland to light a candle at 6:30 p.m. in memory of friends and families who died of HIV in the State.
A joint press release on Saturday stated that it would be a sign of respect to the departed souls, and to express solidarity towards the cause of HIV in the State.
“The day resonates with our perennial theme ‘We Remember. We Take Action. We Live Beyond HIV!’ and is marked in remembrance of the departed souls who lost their lives to AIDS. Lighting the candle signifies our remembrance and honouring them and those who dedicated their lives to helping people living with and affected by HIV,” it stated.
The memorial was started in 1983 by people living with HIV. Ever since the first HIV case detection in 1990 in Nagaland, the virus has continued to spread rapidly with an adult prevalence rate of 1.45% and general population prevalence rate at 1.66%, it informed.
Despite many efforts by NGOs, Government and all sections of the society, the State has been waging a “lost battle” with 2187 persons who have lost their lives to AIDS in the State, it reminded.
“Given the advisory measures due to the ongoing pandemic crises of the COVID-19 outbreak, the collective group are appealing to the denizens of the state seeking their support and to express their solidarity to join hands in observing the day under the local theme ‘A time to remember’ by lighting a candle at 6:30 p.m. this Sunday at their respective place and keep the candle burning for a brief moment while offering a minute of silence in respect and to honour the departed souls,” it stated.
Further, the organisers have requested those who observed the memorial service to voluntarily share their pictures via WhatsApp @ +918974545505, which will be further shared across relevant social media platforms for public awareness.
(Page News Service)