Discussions fail to resolve HIV-affected children's cause

POKHARA: The future of HIV-affected students, expelled by their school a few days ago, has become uncertain even though the concerned stakeholders have been trying hard to resolve the issue at the earliest.

Two or three meetings are organised every day in Pokhara and Lekhnath to discuss on the issue. But the meetings have not yielded any result yet.

"Though we discussed a lot, we couldn't reach to a conclusion. Almost all the participants attended the meeting are positive towards the students," said Laxmi Adhikari, chairman of Akura Care Village (ACV), where the students are staying.

"I am always ready to admit the students back in the school if other guardians have no objection," said Somlal Tiwari, principal, Diamond Boarding School, where the students were studying before they were expelled. He also said the school had waived bus fee for the schools residing in the ACV.

District Education Officer of Kaski Baikunta Prasad Aryal said the problem should be solved through consensus. "We can find solution to this problem if we can convince other guardians," he added.

Dr Basanta Tamrakar hoped that the issue would be resolved soon. "Many government and non-government organisations are working for the cause of the HIV-affected people. I hope this problem will also be solved," he added. He said no one should be discriminated just because he or she is suffering from HIV.

Chairman of District Children Welfare Office, Kaski, Mina Gurung also said the problem should be solved at the earliest. She also said the students should be allowed to enter the school at the earliest. The meeting decided to organise a grand meeting to resolve the problem.

Representatives of AKC also held discussions with different social organisations and local clubs to resolve the issue. They also stressed on the need to forge consensus on the issue.

The school on Monday expelled three children, two among which are HIV-affected, because of the pressure of parents of other kids.