India's State of Goa Mulls Compulsory HIV Tests Before Marriage

© AP Photo / Ajit SolankiIndian brides pose for photograph before a mass wedding in Surat, India, Sunday, Dec. 24, 2017
Indian brides pose for photograph before a mass wedding in Surat, India, Sunday, Dec. 24, 2017 - Sputnik International
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New Delhi (Sputnik): Couples eager to marry in the Indian coastal state of Goa will soon have to undergo HIV tests, the State’s Health Minister Vishwajit Rane has said, adding that it will be a prerequisite before exchanging wedding vows and registering a marriage.

Rane, who is also Goa’s Law Minister, said a proposal to make HIV tests compulsory before marriage is being evaluated by the law department.

"We are considering making HIV tests compulsory for prospective couples before registration of marriage in Goa. It is not mandatory right now," Rane told an Indian news agency on Tuesday.

The statement has drawn a mixed response from people on social media, with some of the calling it a bit intrusive, and others finding it justifiable.

​One suggested it was a good idea to undergo medical tests for dangerous diseases instead of marrying based on horoscopes. But some want the Government to focus on perennial issues instead of thinking of ways to further regulate the general public.

Goa is a major tourist destination in India, known for its beaches and Portuguese heritage. Goa has had a total of 17,122 reported HIV positive test results from 1987 until 2019, according to a media report. A total of 1,175 AIDS-related deaths were also reported to the GOA SACS (State Aids Control Society) up until February 2019.​

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