Soldier challenges India army ban on HIV-positive personnel

Soldier challenges India army ban on HIV-positive personnel

[JURIST] An HIV-positive soldier has challenged his upcoming dismissal from the Indian Army, the Supreme Court [official website] announced Friday. A Human Rights Law Network [advocacy website] lawyer who is representing the soldier argued that the policy barring HIV-positive personnel from military service was "retrograde," pointing to a March 2008 ruling by the South African High Court that struck down a similar South African policy [PlusNews report]. He also noted that other nations, including the United States [US military policy text, PDF], already allow HIV-positive people to serve in their armed forces. IANS has more.

Other countries have also rejected policies banning all HIV-positive individuals from serving in the military. Last year, the Supreme Court of Mexico [official website] ruled [JURIST report] such a policy was an unconstitutional infringement on principles of equality. The Mexican military may now only expel soldiers if a doctor certifies that their condition prevents them from performing their duties.