Tribal People are More Susceptible to HIV Infection than Other Social Groups in West Bengal, India.

DOI: 10.14673/IJA201511002
Published in Int. Journal of Anthropology – Vol. 30 – n.1 – 2015

Keywords: HIV infection, tribes, West Bengal, India.

There are 705 tribes in India located in five major tribal belts across the country. Jhargram is the main tribal area. However, there are no studies on the prevalence of HIV/AIDS infection in these areas. Therefore, the present study was conducted to report the prevalence of HIV infection among the people of the tribal dominated areas of West Bengal. Overall, in the present study, 9.9% of the people were found to be infected with HIV. It was observed that the prevalence of HIV infection was significantly higher among tribal people (16.3%) than among the higher hereditary castes (general cast 3.9%). More impor- tantly, the prevalence of HIV infection was identical in Other Backward Class (OBC) (10.0 %) and Scheduled Castes (SC) (10.0%). Furthermore, the rate of HIV infection rose with social class (x2=13.801, p<0.001). Moreover, tribal peoples were 4.8 (odds ratio (OR)= 4.80, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.91– 12.55) times more likely of contracting the HIV virus than the general castes. And have a 1.75 (OR (OBC) = 1.75, 95% CI: 0.76 – 4.09; OR (SC) = 1.75 95% CI: 0.71 – 4.44) times greater risk of contracting the HIV virus than the OBC and SC, respectively (in the present study among the population of West Bengal, India). Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) play a fundamental role in educating these groups and raising awareness. However, more AIDS awareness education in tribal languages is urgently needed.

Pratihar, S.
Assistant Professor, Department of Zoology,
Sukumar Sengupta Mahavidalaya, Keshpur Midnapore-721150.
West Bengal, India.

The Human – A Glorified Animal?

DOI: 10.14673/HE2015121004
Published in: Human Evolution – Vol.30 – N.1-2 – 2015

Only a tiny portion of unshared DNA makes our world so different from that of other primates, and gives us our bipedalism and the ability to think logically. Imagination and morality are two universal human characteristics. The human brain has undergone a dramatic increase in volume during the course of its evolution. The gene FOXP2 is known to be implicated in human language skills. Another significant feature is our memory. Memory is quite possibly the most amazing phenomenon in the natural world. Biological and cultural evolution have enabled us to build societies. Genes work synergistically with the environment to shape our behaviour. Empathy, the theory of mind, culture are no longer considered unique to the human species, the ability to hold opposing beliefs in our mind at the same time is the key. Nature is still present, imposing its selection on humans. Natural selection is now synonymous with cultural selection since we have become technologically dependent with regard to genetics and evolution.


 Pratihar, S.
Department of Zoology, DST Fast Track Young Scientist,
Vidyasagar University, Midnapore-721102, West Bengal. India.
Bose Institute, Kolkata-700091, West Bengal. India.

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