Placing his problematic and counterproductive political stance on peace talks with the Taliban aside, if there is one thing Imran Khan knows how to do, it is compassionate social work for some life-threatening causes. Everyone is well aware of Shaukat Khanum, among other initiatives, that he took up in order to help cancer patients. It definitely bolstered his image among Pakistanis as well as the global audience that remains ever tuned into updates on Khan. But his drive against polio has been most remarkable – and perhaps most politically relevant – in the past few days. After inaugurating a three-day anti-polio campaign in Nowshera on Wednesday, Khan urged the Taliban to nark the belligerency and come to the table for dialogue.

Khan went further on to state that those working selflessly to eradicate the polio virus from Pakistan’s youngest and most vulnerable segment of society, are true “mujahideen” and were performing their moral duties despite a slew of threats of attacks. Some may have an issue with turning the cause into a religious case but we don’t have too many options to begin with. If this is the rhetoric that dispels paranoia about polio vaccination, then so be it.

JUI-S’s Chief Maulana Sami-ul-Haq joined the cause as well. It goes without saying that when it comes to the issue of a child’s health, religious explanation justifying it, is unnecessary. However if Sami-ul-Haq’s endorsement catalyzes otherwise reluctant and wary parents into vaccinating their children against the polio virus, there is certainly no qualm to raise. Something is – really – better than nothing, in this scenario. Endangering the lives of innocent children under whatever bizarre logic is only a step backwards, and given how dire circumstances are – with relentless attacks on anti-polio campaigners – any and all support, from politicians, to religious clerics, is more than welcome.