KARACHI - The Sindh government has directed the authorities concerned to ensure administration of polio drops to each child of internally displaced person (IDP) families of North Waziristan at entry points of the province.

Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah said this while presiding over a meeting regarding anti-polio strategy held at CM House Karachi on Wednesday.

“Many displaced persons/families are moving from North Waziristan to the settled areas of the different parts of the country including Sindh with unvaccinated children that posing threats to the health of people residing in the areas where IDPs are setting,” the chief minister added.

Shah said polio and terrorists are equally dangerous for the society as strict checking has been ordered at the all entry points of borders and cities in the province to ensure that neither children of genuine IDPs and others can pass without taking anti-polio drops nor terrorists can enter in the province by posing themselves as IDPs.

He said the provincial health department and national and international organisations working for the polio eradication to avail this facility and should fully concentrate specially on the IDPs influx, their possible localities and ensure that their each child up to 5 years of age is vaccinated.

The chief minister raised his concern over the emergence of polio cases from Pakhtun community in Karachi. He directed for establishing district polio control rooms at each district separately and asked the district administration for registration of IDPs and collect data of their children and family status in case arrival in the district.

Chief Minister also directed for establishment of provincial emergency operations centers for the polio eradication and making it functional as soon as possible. He directed Sindh police to provide full security to the polio teams.

Briefing the meeting, polio coordinator Shahnaz Wazir Ali said seven polio cases had been emerged this year and all of them reported from Karachi, and all belongs to Pakhtun families except one who belongs to Punjabi family. She said special attention was being made on these vulnerable areas.

In addition to deployment of 28 anti-polio teams at border of Sindh-Punjab and Sindh-Balochistan, more than 166 anti-polio teams are working all transits points of the cities, airports, railway stations, and roads/tool plazas to administer the polio drops to each child up to 5 years of age.

Dr Ahmed Ali Shaikh, provincial focal person for polio, informed the meeting that two anti-polio campaigns round each from July 5-8 and July 17-20 would be conducted in Karachi to vaccinate 153,564 children in each round. Besides, a total of 194 anti-polio teams have been deployed at all transit points in the province including border of Sindh, he added.