As part of a safe sex initiative in India, the BBC World Service Trust India (in conjunction with the Gates Foundation) has introduced a novel approach to the stem the tide of AIDS in the tech-savvy country; a ring tone. The ring tone is actually just a man repeating the word "condom" over and over sans musical accompaniment, reports the Washington Post.
There are nearly as many cell phone users in India as there are people in the US (roughly 270 million mobile phone-atics). HIV infection is a big taboo in the Land Of The Tiger. Estimates of infected people range from 2 to 3 million people in a country of over 1.1 billion. Previous estimates ranged as high as 5.7 million infected people but those numbers are often discounted due to their survey method. If the 2 to 3 million numbers are correct (we'll say 2.5 for safety), then the infection rate is actually pretty in line with the West.
Not to be insensitive but that's hardly sub Saharan Africa bad. For instance, Swaziland has a reported 38% infection rate (no decimals are misplaced in that number). We suppose it's better to be safe than sorry and the easiest way to do that is prevention. That means condoms (per that ring tone) are a good idea, samies regarding circumcision and clean needles.
Sure, wearing a condom is kind of a drag but having sex with a prostitute is a pretty dicey prospect in general even though prostitution exists in a gray area in Indian law. And sure Hindu men don't generally get circumcised but maybe they can look into it (though some detractors think it hinders sexual satisfaction then again so does having your d*ck rot off). And finally, your heroin club might say sharing a needle is cool but it's really not the best way to chase the dragon. Regarding the condoms and clean needles, even absent the AIDS menace there are other nasties that you can pick up off unclean genitalia or used syringes. The ring tone has been downloaded 60,000 times and we can only hope that people are doing so unironically.