On Friday, four new type1 polio cases were reported on the same day from FATA, according to results determined at National Institute of Health (NIH) laboratory. These four cases have been added to the pre-existing 43 polio reports in the country. Infants from several villages in Khyber Agency were among those who failed to receive polio vaccination mainly due to the conflicted security situation within the region. According to medical reports obtained from the agency as well as other surrounding areas, at least 8,000 children in Khyber Agency and 260,000 in North and South Waziristan have not been immunized.

The condition of polio campaigns throughout the country – but in the tribal agencies, specifically – can be described as an abysmal failure on part of the government to initiate vaccination programs that are adequately immune to extremist attacks.  What is even more deplorable about this impasse is the fact that an easily preventable disease that can be curtailed with a fewdrops is haunting the lives of innocent children simply due to faulty security measures. An aberration is increasingly becoming the norm: Polio workers have been gunned down and threatened from entering certain places by militants.

This predicament holds even more consequences for Pakistanis which includes traveling restrictions imposed on the citizens of the country given how polio is a highly infectious viral disease. But the most harrowing truth is that Pakistani children become the sole targets of militants who react to polio campaigns with hostility and violence. The government of Pakistan should immediately realize how high the stakes are and how irreversible the repercussions are for those who fail to be vaccinated. It is a tragedy that political liabilities have chosen to use a disease against young and helpless children of Pakistan but what is worse is how authorities are at a loss to solve this dilemma.