LAKKI MARWAT The district administration has decided to stop influx of the non-iodised salt to the district. The administration with the help of police, health and food department authorities and Micronutrient Initiative (MI) officials will ensure strict monitoring and checking on the borders with other areas, especially Punjab to stop influx of the non-iodised salt into the district. It was told in a meeting of district iodine deficiency disorders committee meeting held under the chairmanship of District Coordination Officer Muhammad Anwar Khan Mehsud on Saturday. The MI Universal Salt Iodization field officer Sadiq Hussain, EDO ESED Haji Noor Hasan Khan, DO health Dr Abdul Rehman, chairman health education literacy programme (Help) Izzat Khan Marwat, district food and sanitary inspector Ziaullah Khan, SMO Dr Rashid Ahmad and other officials concerned attended the meeting. Nearly 25 tons salt is imported to the district from Kalabagh (Punjab) and most of the quantity of the imported salt is non-iodized, an official informed. He said that implementation on the relevant laws in letter and spirit and effective monitoring could help to ensure availability of the iodized salt in the market. The USI field officer, Sadiq Hussain said that Micronutrient provides KIO3 (Potassium Iodate) to the salt factories on subsidised rates in addition to providing drip feed for processing and pouches for packaging the salt. We launched activities in schools to disseminate message of usefulness of using iodised salt through students and imparted training to the Lady Health Workers to build their capacity to mobilise household about usage of iodized salt in daily diet, he said. Iodine deficiency in the human body can cause several hazards and complications besides it can put harmful effects on the human health, DO (Health) Dr Abdul Rehman said. Miscarriages and stillbirths, goiter, congenital abnormalities, and an increase in newborn deaths of the major health hazards of not consuming iodized salt, he said, adding: Iodine deficiency also hurts brain development besides its deficiency in the early childhood causes retarded mental and physical development. He added that use of iodised salt could help prevent decreased fertility, spontaneous abortions and stillbirths in pregnant women and goiter and its complications in the adults. The DCO, Anwar Mehsud underlined the need for launching awareness among the household about the usefulness of usage of iodised salt. The teachers, students, clerics and LHWs can play an important role in educating the people particularly households in this regard, he maintained. He reaffirmed that the administration would take all measures to ensure that non-iodized salt could not reach the market.