ISLAMABAD - As the sit-ins of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) and Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) getting prolonged, the number of patients, especially policemen visiting hospitals for treatment, has also been increasing.

The police personnel who are on duty even before the arrival of the marchers have been falling sick due to exhaustion, change of weather and substandard food. Since the police force has been deputed in different areas of the city, about 700 policemen have visited Polyclinic Hospital for treatment, informed Dr Tanveer, spokesperson of Polyclinic emergency ward.

They hail from Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Islamabad Capitol territory, Frontier Constabulary and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Though, majority of them had genuine problems but many are complaining for merely fatigue and want to go back to their hometowns.

“We did not keep them in the hospital except for few hours and if they need to leave the hospital, they may contact their concerned departments,” maintained Dr Tanveer.

According to health experts, weather is changing and body temperature of some people do not adjust with the changing weather temperature so they start falling sick. And in a crowded place when people are in close contacts in rainy weather they transmit such viral infections to others too.

On Sunday too, around 150 personnel went to Polyclinic complaining diarrhea, fever and sore throat.

According to Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (Pims) officials, many policemen have been visiting emergency department with complaints of tiredness only.

“They want rest and have been asking for medical certificates so that they could avail leaves on the basis of those certificates,” the Pims officials added.

“We are tired of this situation,” complained a policeman on condition of anonymity. “We also get sick like other normal people. We are on duty for the last one week without any proper food and living facilities. When the Chief Commissioner of Islamabad can go on leave in such a crucial situation why we can’t,” he argued.

Six marchers, mostly from PTI, were also treated at Pims on Sunday who suffered from fever, flu, sore throat and weakness, according to Pims spokesperson Dr Waseem Khawaja.

He said that 18 ambulances were on high alert to bring those marching patients to the hospital for treatment and people could call on helpline number: 0519261170 for ambulance service to bring them to the hospital.