The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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A crusade for AIDS, a cry for kids
- Bianca Jagger plans Children’s Day trip as part of world awareness campaign

A Rolling Stone may be on his way. But beating Mick to Calcutta is ex-wife Bianca Jagger. The human-rights activist is set to arrive in the city on Children’s Day for a three-night tour. Her schedule is packed — a walk with youth activists, trips to red-light areas and a closer look at anti-cross-border trafficking projects.

Bianca, an HIV/AIDS ambassador for Christian Aid, will be visiting Sanlaap, an NGO working against trafficking in the region. The Nicaraguan-born activist has just completed a tour of Zambia, where she met children orphaned by the disease. As part of the campaign leading up to World AIDS Day on December 1, the 55-year-old and a crew from the funding agency will be “reporting on the AIDS crisis in India”. They will, in all probability, be bringing along a film crew.

She is to spend time at Sneha, Sanlaap’s shelter home for under-aged girls rescued from red-light areas, some of whom are HIV-positive. A walk with youth activists, children living in red-light areas and schoolchildren is scheduled for November 14 from Victoria Memorial, as a “red alert against child prostitution”. Meetings with youth groups in red-light areas active against minors in prostitution are also on the anvil, as is a trip to the North 24-Parganas cross-border trafficking project area.

Indian “causes” are not new to Bianca, who has visited war-torn Kosovo and Kabul, and has campaigned for bodies such as Amnesty International, Save the Children and American Way. She had visited Bhopal shortly after the 1989 gas leak, has been pushing for US action against Dow Chemicals, the current owners of Union Carbide, and has criticised the Indian government for relaxing the charges against the corporation.

“I call upon decent people all round the world who believe in fairness and justice to join us in supporting the poor, the helpless, and the abused gas survivors of Bhopal,” said Bianca recently.

The India connection does not end there. Bianca and Mick’s daughter, Jade, is planning to open “eco-friendly hotels” in India, part of a chain launched in Ibiza. The jewellery designer, who has been known for unconventional behaviour in the past, claims she wants to attract the “family types” with the small “houses”, which are to use “only solar power, and where only organic food will be served”.

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