One of India’s leading condom manufacturers is to manufacture a condom for gay men.

The country legalised homosexuality last year and society is making gradual steps towards acceptance.

However, a recent UN report suggested that India is seeing rising levels of HIV infection among gay and bisexual men

Condom company Hindustan Latex Family Planning Promotion Trust and the National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) said that a study of men who have sex with men found that many were not using condoms because those designed for vaginal sex caused discomfort.

The new condoms, to be called Spice Up, will contain extra lubrication.

A spokesman from the company told Mid Day: “We are still in the process of developing the product. As far as the costing goes, we are still unsure if it must be sold in the socially marketed category or in general one. However, this concern is secondary to product development.”

A NACO executive added: “We want to bring about a behavioural change in the habits of these men, which is difficult because they are a closed group and do not respond well to advice from outsiders. We have, therefore, roped in some peer leaders to carry our message across and hope this will work.”

Sexologist Dr Prakash Kothari said: “This product will be welcomed by homosexual men as well as couples who engage in anal sex. Sometimes during lovemaking, the lubricating gets messy and anal sex can get painful. A condom with extra lubrication will bring securities to such couples.”

A date for the new condoms to go on sale has not been released.