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Water samples from 5 areas of Karachi show presence of polio virus

Traces of polio virus have been found in five areas of Karachi, the Provincial Anti-polio Task Force said on Tuesday.

Samples of water from 11 locations were taken in Karachi. “From these, the samples from Sohrab Goth, Chakorah Nala, Muhammad Khan Colony, Baldia, and Nagi Nala have traces of the polio virus,” Programme Incharge Fayyaz Jatoi told a meeting of key stakeholders, adding that samples collected from Sukkur in the same month also had traces of the virus.

In the briefing, it was revealed that up till the month of September 118,557 children from Karachi had not been administered the polio vaccine due to lack of consent from their parents.

The stakeholders were further told that between April to September, 96,906 children from Karachi were not administered the vaccine because they weren’t available at home when the polio teams visited. At least 88,464 children from rural Sindh were also not administered the vaccine due to the same reason.

“It is through all of our collective efforts that not a singe case of polio has been reported in Sindh,” Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah — who was chairing the meeting — said, adding that his government is committed to eradicating polio from the country.

After the briefing, the Sindh CM said that polio teams should be sent to all schools in order to ensure that polio drops are administered to all children.

“We need to further strengthen our efforts against the virus to make sure that it is eliminated,” Murad said, noting that Pakistan and Afghanistan are the only countries that still have not eliminated the virus entirely.

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