Imphal: Music with a purpose vibrates Manipur’s Imphal city on Thursday evening as artistes from across the eight northeastern states gathered at the second edition of the North East Multi-Media Campaign 2020 to create awareness on HIV and AIDS.
Hundreds of music lovers, young and old alike, from across the state thronged Bheigyachandra Open Air Theatre (BOAT) and witnessed the live musical concert under the theme ‘North East United Against HIV/AIDS’.
Representatives from each state of the northeast region along with officials and dignitaries supported the event with their presence, which was organised by the Manipur State AIDS Control Society (MACS) in collaboration with National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) under the ministry of health and family welfare, government of India.
According to officials, Manipur is one of the worst-hit of the HIV/AIDS state in India due to the excessive use of the drug among the youth.
Despite unable to cut down the use of the drug among the youngsters, such a unique programme aims to spread awareness and to control the infection of HIV/AIDs among the youth, it said.
Speaking to EastMojo on the sideline of the event, joint director MACS, Avira Longjam, said that northeast states like Nagaland, Mizoram and Manipur bordering with Myanmar are prevalent of HIV epidemic.
And Mizoram, the least populated state, stood the first in the country with people infected HIV/AIDS, he added.
As per the released data by the Mizoram State AIDS Control Society on the World AIDS DAY in 2019, at least 17,897 people are suffering from HIV/AIDS patients, the highest in the country.
In 1997, almost 76.9 per cent drug users were HIV/AIDS positive in Manipur, the highest in the South Asian countries. However, with the HIV prevention programme initiated by the state concerned department, it has now curtailed down the situation, said Longjam.
As informed by the official, the department has also earmarked the elimination of mother to child transmission, one of the causes of HIV infection, by 2020.
The music event featured various music bands and folks artistes from the northeast region to spread awareness on HIV to the people, especially the millennial generation.
Bands like Bipolar Shadows from Sikkim, Tune Up Channel from Nagaland, Innocent Eyes from Manipur, Larger Than 90 from Meghalaya, Boomarang from Mizoram, Impromptu from Assam, Reloaded from Arunachal Pradesh and Daamal from Tripura were featured during the multi-media music competition in the event.