1200 South Asian men from India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh who lived in either South Asia or the UK participated in focus group discussions conducted by the Naz Foundation to gain insight into the sociocultural dimensions of sex between men in the region. Although participants noted the lack of accessibility to women as the main reason for such behavior, the overwhelming majority of these men who have sex with men were married. Those aged 14-16 years had an average of 2 sex partners per year, while those aged 17-20 had 5, those aged 21-35 had 42, and those aged 36-45 had 35. There are many anecdotal reports of young men in South Asia who have sex with men and/or women in exchange for money or other tangible goods. By early 1997, 1232 cases of HIV infection had been reported in Pakistan, of which 88.4% were in men. These data come from the National AIDS Program, and consist largely of cases reported from 4 provinces. While the mode of HIV transmission was not recorded in 41% of cases, male-male sex was the acknowledged mode of transmission among 3.2% of HIV-positive men. Male-male sex appears to exist among married men who have extramarital sex contacts, prisoners, seafarers, IV drug users, truck drivers, and male prostitutes. In Pakistan, men who have sex with men comprise a highly vulnerable group which needs to be targeted for HIV/AIDS awareness-raising interventions.
|Sexual health exchange
|Published - 1998