New Delhi: Continuing its practice of bringing together different stakeholders to speak up against the baseless stigma and discrimination that is faced by persons affected by Leprosy, The Nippon Foundation in collaboration with Sasakawa-India Leprosy Foundation (S-ILF) on 30th January organized their annual event Global Appeal 2019. The International Chamber of Commerce has endorsed this year’s global appeal.
The appeal was read in the presence of the Minister of Law and Technology, Mr Ravi Shankar Prasad and Mr John Denton, Secretary General, International Chamber of Commerce. It aims at bringing international attention to the stigma and unjust treatment that still affects those affected by this fully curable disease.
The endorsement of the Appeal by the International Chamber of Commerce is significant as the information about the true facts of leprosy viz it being a bacterial disease and among the least infectious of diseases; early detection and treatment avoids disabilities and that it is not hereditary will now reach all its members across the globe.
The major step in fighting stigma and discrimination is awareness and scientific knowledge. The launch of the Appeal in India further highlights the essence of the landmark Supreme Court Judgement of 14th September 2018 which exhorted the government to act on ending stigma against persons affected by leprosy by both more effective medical outreach and proactive initiatives for their social and economic integration.
India targets to be a leprosy free nation by 2030 and Mr Yohei Sasakawa WHO Goodwill ambassador and recipient of the Gandhi Peace Prize 2018 pledges to support the vision of Prime Minister Modi.