It is with a heavy heart that we mourn the loss of Dr. Suniti Solomon, a pioneer of HIV research and treatment in India.
Dr. Solomon documented India’s first HIV case in 1986 when blood samples of six commercial sex workers tested positive. Suniti’s dedicated work in HIV epidemiology, prevention, care, support and related gender issues, all started at a time when many were reluctant to delve into what was a little known field. It’s because of her commitment and ground breaking research that she received several awards including a Lifetime Achievement Award by the state and the 'National Women Bio-scientist Award' by the ministry of science and technology.
She was a beautiful person and a force of nature. The Indian AIDS epidemic was dramatically altered by her vision, creativity, tenacity and commitment to the highest standards of care and prevention for people affected by HIV. It was a sincere blessing to have known her and to have worked with her and her talented team. She was one of the most effective public health leaders, and a truly warm human being who never lost sight of the importance of each person—each individual life.
We are deeply saddened by this news and grateful for the opportunity to have known her. From all of us at IAS, our thoughts and warmest wishes go out to Dr. Solomon’s family and loved ones.