Communicable and Non-communicable diseases – HIV, Malaria, Cancer, Mental Health, etc.

Supreme Court notice to Centre on PIL on laws


Mains Paper 2: Governance | Issues relating to development & management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: Leprosy, fundamental rights

Mains level: Discrepancies in various laws that allow social discrimination

Notice to Centre against leprosy discrimination

  1. The Supreme Court issued notice to the Centre and states on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) seeking repeal of 119 statutes that allegedly discriminate against leprosy-affected persons
  2. The PIL requested that the said Acts be declared unconstitutional

Violating fundamental rights

  1. PIL said that the provisions in the said statutes violated the fundamental rights guaranteed under Articles 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution



  1. Leprosy, also known as Hansen’s disease (HD), is a long-term infection by the bacterium Mycobacterium leprae or Mycobacterium lepromatosis
  2. Symptoms that develop include granulomas of the nerves, respiratory tract, skin, and eyes
  3. This may result in a lack of ability to feel pain, thus loss of parts of extremities due to repeated injuries or infection due to unnoticed wounds
  4. Weakness and poor eyesight may also be present
  5. Leprosy is spread between people. This is thought to occur through a cough or contact with fluid from the nose of an infected person
  6. Contrary to popular belief, it is not highly contagious
  7. Leprosy is curable with a treatment known as multidrug therapy
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