Andhra Pradesh is one of the states worst imapcted by AIDS. It’s rare for a politician to take such a bold step. Let’s hope it’s not a PR stunt.
Swamy’s parents committed suicide after they came to know that they were suffering from AIDS. Ever since, life hasn’t been easy for this six-year-old from Kurnool district.
“My mother is Jamakka and my father is Eeranna. Both of them have died,” says Swamy, an AIDS patient.
Swamy’s uncle Parandahmudu says, “When Swamy’s parents came to know that all of them are infected with AIDS, they silently got poison and emptied the bottle into three glasses.”
“But the boy escaped death because he came out to play. Minister Mareppa came to know about this and has sent us money to perform the last rites of his parents,” he adds.
But Swamy, himself an AIDS patient, is not an orphan anymore. After the state cabinet minister M Mareppa heard Swamy’s story while touring Kurnool, he decided to be a foster father to the child.
“I have done this earlier also. When I came to know about the plight of those infected with AIDS, I promised their parents that I’ll be their father, I have been taking care of them since then,” says state minister for lift irrigation, M Mareppa.
“Even after the death of their parents, I am taking care of all their needs and will continue to do the same to this child also,” he adds.
This is not the first time that Mareppa has adopted an HIV-positive child. Earlier, in 2005, he adopted three HIV positive children.