Two more polio case emerges as KP probes hospital fire incident
Amid polio vaccination controversy, the National Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) for Polio Eradication on Tuesday notified two new polio cases from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with this the total number of polio cases in the country reaches to eight this year.
According to the EOC, one polio case has been confirmed from a sample taken from North Waziristan and the other from Bannu. The National Institute of Health (NIH) had isolated the wild polio virus from a stool sample of 22-month-old boy Hamza of Kot Beli, Bannu and two-year-old girl Razia of Ahmad Khel, Miran Shah area of North Waziristan district.
An official of the EOC, citing the tense situation in parts of the province, also confirmed that the ongoing polio eradication drive has been suspended in 24 union councils of Peshawar.
The campaign was suspended after a large number of people staged a protest demonstration and resorted to violence following reports that a large number of students had been brought to hospitals after they were administrated polio drops.
The EOC officials said that the campaign has been suspended keeping in mind the safety and security of polio workers.
Provincial Health Secretary Farooq Jameel held the parents of the two victims of the polio virus responsible for their ailment.
Meanwhile, Police have registered First Information Report (FIR) against 12 individuals who were behind the propaganda against the polio campaign in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP).
Earlier in the day, the spokesman of polio eradication in Pakistan, Babar Atta, said in a tweet that police have lodged an “FIR against 12 individuals who were behind the Peshawar Polio Drama.”
He added that “Raids [are] being conducted to get all of them arrested. I am in touch with Peshawar Police Chief & following up on all updates. InshaAllah not a single one will be spared.”
Meanwhile, the police have arrested a man on after he allegedly spread misinformation about the anti-polio vaccine in a series of videos that went viral on social media, a day after hundreds of children in different cities complained of illness and were admitted to hospitals in the midst of a province-wide anti-polio drive.
Videos circulating on social media show a resident of Peshawar’s Mashokhel area, Nazar Muhammad, in Hayatabad Medical Complex, where children from a school in Badhber were admitted yesterday with complaints of illness following administration of the anti-polio vaccine.
In the video, Nazar alleges that administration of the vaccine causes children to fall unconscious. Then he turns to a group of children standing next to him and orders them to “fall asleep”. They then lie down on the hospital bed behind them as if they were unconscious.
When a boy gets up, Nazar tells him to “fall asleep” again, after which he lies down on the bed again.
In another video, Nazar is speaking to reporters outside, surrounded by a crowd of men. He alleges that some children in his video died after being administered the vaccine.