The young woman lay on the railway track waiting for instant death from a passing train. As the train approached, the local station master who reached there whisked her away and gave her a fresh lease of life. This is not a movie screenplay. This happened at Ghataprabha (Belgaum District) .
A couple of years ago she completed her 12th Standard. Recently, when she fell sick and her blood was examined, it was discovered that she was HIV positive. With both her parents having passed away 5 years back, she was living with her brother and sister. Her troubles began on discovery of her HIV positive status. Her relatives started harassing her and bombarding her with questions as to the source of AIDS . Her life became so unbearable that she decided to end it. But fate intervened in the form of the Station Master and saved her life.
Just as the Station master rescued the young lady, 3 BSW (Bachelor of Social Work) students who were passing that way realized that she was from their village. They took her to her house. On seeing her return, the relatives asked the students why they had brought her back when she had brought disgrace to the family. They said it would have been better if she had died. They refused to take her back.
One of the students then took her to his house and intimated Mahesh Jadhav of Mahesh Foundation, which is engaged in the creating AIDS awareness and rehabilitating AIDs victims. Mahesh and Laxmi from the Foundation visited the village and counseled the victim and her family on the disease and dispelled their doubts and wrong notions about the disease. He relatives were, however, unmoved. As she needed immediate medical attention, Mahesh Jadhav then ensured that she was admitted to the District Hospital.
This incident proves that despite considerable, sustained efforts at promoting AIDs awareness, people still have wrong notions resulting in pain and misery for its victims.
Laxmi, who accompanied Mahesh to the victim’s village, is actively involved in Mahesh Foundation’s activities. She said that death was inevitable for everyone. She added, “Many people who have tested HIV positive and are suffering from AIDS are leading active lives. They are examples of the human will to live. Suicide is not the solution. “. Laxmi leads by example: She is HIV positive herself. She is also very positive about Life.