A bit of confusion as I attempted to leave Mt Abu. My hotel promised a private bus at 8:30, but past experiences have taught me that it is best to see the private bus before you pay - government busses are universally crap, whereas VIP busses range in quality.
However, when i headed down to the bus station, I found out that there weren't enough people for the private bus that day, and so I had to find another way out of town. Thus, a shared jeep ride down hill, followed by a 6 hour government bus to Udaipur followed.
It was a really enjoyable ride - amazing mountain scenery in this part of the country, and the english skills of most government bus passengers are poor enough that after finding out your country, they're content to leave you alone.
However, towards the end of the trip (once the bus was half empty), a young indian lady got on the bus, and actually chose to sit down next to me (a very strange thing, given that there were seats available that wouldn't require her to sit next to a man). She then picked up my newspaper sitting next to me, and began to read it - in English.
This was too much, and so I asked her what she did. It turns out she was an AIDS/HIV councillor - and thus educated. She works in the rural villages, and takes the crappy busses out to visit the people.
It was very interesting, although, very upsetting to talk to her. She had tested 70 people that day, with 10% of them testing positive. Alas, drugs are only available in the largest cities, and so the rural people get very little to no treatment. The reason for this, is of course, cost.
I'm fairly confident that the drug companies here make local copies of the major HIV drugs - they make local copies of Viagara, so it's pretty clear that they don't care about international patents. However, even with these low cost indian copies, they're still not low cost enough and so the people suffer.
Post a Comment