SAARC Goodwill Ambassadors for HIV/AIDS

SAARC Goodwill Ambassador’s Programme, Mumbai, India, 12 January 2015

Facilitating implementation of SAARC Regional Strategy on HIV/AIDS; to create greater awareness on HIV/AIDS through public appearances and through mass media and to address the issues of Stigma and Discrimination prevailing in the communities of SAARC Member States including mainstreaming HIV/AIDS to form part of development agenda and advocate for affordable treatment, care and support for PLHA (People Living with HIV/AIDS) and as per the approved activities of the Centre for the year 2014 and under the SAARC Goodwill Ambassador’s Programme, Mr. Ajay Devgan, SAARC Goodwill Ambassador for HIV/AIDS involved in a programme jointly organized by NACO, India and STAC, Nepal in Mumbai on 12th Jan. 2015.

Shri Ajay Devgan

Shri Ajay Devgan

SAARC Goodwill Ambassador’s Programme, New Delhi, India, 31 July – 03 August, 2013

As per the approved activities of the Centre for the year 2013 and under the SAARC Goodwill Ambassador’s Programme, Ms. Runa Laila, SAARC Goodwill Ambassador for HIV/AIDS has visited New Delhi, India from 31 July – 03 August, 2013 with the following programmes;

  • Courtesy call on the Honourable Minister, Shri Salman Khurshid, Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India.
  • Courtesy call on the Honourable Minister, Shri Ghulam Nabi Azad, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India
  • Joint Sensitization Meeting with Department of AIDS Control, Government of India and SAARC Officials.
  • Visit at Department of AIDS Control, Government of India.
  • Visit at  Dr. Baba Saheb Ambedkar Hospital of ART Centre, PPTCT Centre of  Treatment & Support Center for HIV/AIDS,  New Delhi
  • Press Conference

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 (Photographs related to the activities held during the visit programmes)

Present SAARC Goodwill Ambassadors for HIV/AIDS

SAARC Goodwill Ambassadors for HIV/AIDS has been appointed by SAARC on 2 January 2013 for the promotion and advocacy of awareness in combating HIV/AIDS in the SAARC Member States. SAARC has decided to confer the honorary title of SAARC Goodwill Ambassadors to Ms. Runa Laila (Bangladesh), Shri Ajay Devgan (India) and Ms. Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy (Pakistan).

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Ms. Runa Laila (Bangladesh) Shri Ajay Devgan (India) Ms. Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy (Pakistan)


First SAARC Goodwill Ambassadors for HIV/AIDS

Under the SAARC Regional Strategy on HIV/AIDS, Ms. Shabana Azmi, internationally acclaimed Indian Cine star and Mr. Sanath Jayasuriya, Internationally acclaimed SriLankan batsman had been nominated as SAARC Goodwill Ambassadors for the programme “Uniting for HIV/AIDS”.

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Ms. Shabana Azmi
Internationally acclaimed Indian actress
Mr. Sanath Jayasuriya
Internationally acclaimed SriLankan Star Criketer

The SAARC Goodwill Ambassador for HIV/AIDS Programme was commenced in January 2009, with the visit of Ms. Shabana Azmi to Nepal, as the SAARC Goodwill Ambassador to raise awareness and advocate greater support to the fight against HIV and AIDS. Her interaction with children and people affected by HIV and AIDS and her plea to the public to remove the social stigma and discrimination against People living with HIV/AIDS received wide publicity. Ms. Azmi made her second successful visit to Bhutan in February 2010. SAARC has appreciated the outstanding service rendered by Ms. Shabana Azmi as SAARC Goodwill Ambassador during her term.

Copyright © 2015-2022, SAARC TB and HIV/AIDS Centre. All rights reserved.


Message of H.E. Secretary General-SAARC-on the occasion World TB Day 2022

“Invest to End TB. Save Lives.”   

Every Year, the World TB Day is observed on 24 March to commemorate the discovery of Mycobacterium Tuberculosis by Dr. Robert Koch in 1882. This Day provides an opportunity to raise public awareness; sensitize communities for broader commitment from all stakeholders; and gather support from various collaborating partners for the fight against this menace.

TB is still a leading infectious killer disease despite a substantial investment for its treatment and prevention. The major causes for high cases of TB are rapid urbanization, high-density of population, air pollution (indoor and outdoor) and migration with drastically rising incidences of diabetes, escalating drug resistance, and an unregulated private health sector. Similarly, social determinants of health, such as education, employment, social support, family income and nutrition, also augment the TB incidence.

While we are still battling with COVID-19, many parts of the SAARC region are facing severe economic and social situations. This has adversely affected anti-TB activities of the Member States. There are funding gaps for TB activities, which are further exacerbated by economic setbacks triggered by the pandemic, while additional funding is required to build back effectively from its adverse impacts. The theme chosen by the World Health Organization for this year’s World TB Day, “Invest to End TB. Save
Lives.” is, therefore, very significant.

I congratulate the SAARC Tuberculosis and HIVIAIDS Centre (STAC) for facilitating the regional campaign to control TB through active involvement of the National Programmes of the Member States of SAARC, which have adopted WHO,s Global Stop TB Partnership strategy, envisioning a TB-free world by 2030.However, the national strategic plans have also been adversely affected by COVID-19, leading to an increase in TB mortality, and a decline in the number of people diagnosed and treated for TB, thereby affecting the rights of people with TB.

Though the recent achievements of the Member States in TB control are encour agrng, there is a greater need to ensure effective implementation of TB control activities by investing resources to achieve the 2030 target. I am confident that the esteemed Member States will make every endeavor in this respect.

Kathmandu, 24 March 2022

By : -Esala Ruwan Weerakoon

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