Around 2,234 Indians were infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) during the blood transfusion process in the last 17 months. [REPRESENTATIONAL IMAGE] Pictured: Volunteers of National Service Scheme (NSS) pose with HIV/AIDS awareness messages on their faces.Reuters

HIV is becoming more common among the elderly population in Madhya Pradesh.

Latest data from the Madhya Pradesh State AIDS Control Society shows that the number of people contracting HIV in the 50 plus group has nearly doubled in the past six years- from 218 in 2008 to 414 in 2014, Hindustan Times reported.

The state has witnessed an overall increase in the total number of HIV cases reported from 2008 (3,300 cases) to this year (4,173 till October).

Of the total 30,253 cases reported across the state since 2008, about 2,560 were from the elderly group.

Experts cited loneliness in old age, unsafe sexual activities and lack of proper safety measures as main reasons for the occurrence: "In case of elderly people, many become bored or lonely after 50. They seek sexual satisfaction by forming sexual liaisons and even seek services of prostitutes," Sanjeev Saxena, projector coordinator of NGO Asha Smita Foundation, told the Hindustan Times. "And most of them indulge in unsafe sex as they are shy to go to a chemist to buy condoms at such an age. They don't feel comfortable in that and take a chance."

However, according to some others, the rise in number may be due to an increase in the total number of cases detected these days than the past.

A UN report released in July ranked India third in the highest number of HIV infected population in the whole world.

According to the report, about 2.1 million people in India have HIV, translating to four out of 10 cases reported in the Asia-Pacific region.

By end of 2013, about 700,000 Indians were receiving antiretroviral therapy.

In India, sexual transmission accounts for about 85.6 percent of the total infections and a minority of five percent is transferred from parents to children.

Nearly 868,000 women in India are sexual workers. About 40 percent of the HIV patients in India are women. The disease is more common in urban areas.

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