AIDS-afflicted couple, two teenage children commit suicide in Tamil Nadu

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Namakkal, Tamil Nadu:  In a suicide pact driven by the stigma of AIDS, a couple in Tamil Nadu afflicted with the dreaded disease and their two teenage children allegedly ended their lives at a village in Namakkal district, which once topped in the prevalence of AIDS/HIV.

A 42-year-old man, formerly a lorry driver, his wife, and teenage daughter and son ended their lives by hanging themselves in their house at Erumaipatty village last night, police said.

The man had been suffering from AIDS but showed some improvement due to treatment in the past few years. After he was found to be afflicted by AIDS, he gave up the driver job and was into turmeric farming.

Meanwhile, his wife was also diagnosed to have contracted AIDS.

Fearing about their and the future of their children - an 18-year-old girl and a 17-year-old son - the couple decided to end their lives. They hanged themselves from the ceiling of their house, DSP  Rajandran said.

Their bodies were found this morning by a milk vendor. Police recovered a suicide note, he said.

Namakkal district, a national lorry hub, was one of the worst affected in the AIDS/HIV prevalence a decade ago, but the rate has come down over the years due to the efforts of government, non-government organisations (NGOs) and others.



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