Arandu border into Chitral made the District vulnerable to the
CHITRAL; The polio free status of Chitral for the last three
decades in Chitral can be largely attributed to the general
awareness among the people where no refusal case for polio vaccine
on the part of the parents to their children has ever been
The district coordinator of expanded program of immunization (EPI),
Dr. Irshad Ahmed told Chitral Times here on Wednesday that the
cooperation of the civil society has been ideally receptive during
the anti-polio vaccination campaigns with each segment of the
society playing its role to make it a success.
“The zeal of the people is to such a optimum level that they
monitored the campaign so that no child of the age below 5 years of
age remains without polio drops at the end of the drive”, he said
adding that keeping in view the enthusiasm of the people including
the women fold did give the opponents to openly oppose it, if there
Mr. Ahmed said that with the provision of android telephone sets
were recently provided to the vaccinators in the district which
will make the central monitoring of anti-polio campaigns more
easier than before.
He said that the health department has been in close touch with the
strata of the society making the general opinion which has provided
fruitful results in the form of keeping the valley of enormous area
free from the crippling disease while its contiguity with Kunar
province of Afghanistan which has been frequented with polio cases.
Niamat Shah, a retired vaccinator of the health department, said
that he did not come across a single case when the parents refused
to administer oral polio vaccines to the children while the people
in the far-flung valleys of Yarkhoon, Baroghil and Laspur used to
eagerly wait for his arrival.
He observed that the women folk were found more awakened to the
situation than their male partners as they were inquisitive about
the health of their children and dreaded the lethal disease.
Niaz Ahmed Niazi advocate, a human rights activist, said that the
earnestness of the civil society for the eradication of polio can
be gauged from the fact that a number of parents filed a writ
petition with the local court of law against the health department
when their children were left from the oral polio vaccines during a
He said that the people of Chitral were noted for being highly
curious about healthcare and education as they consider no price
too high for treatment and education of their children.
“I knew many people who even sold their landed properties and sent
their children for treatment in Aga Khan Hospital in Karachi or
sent them for higher education in Peshawar University”, he said.
The credit of keeping the district free from polio should go to the
awakened civil society of Chitral instead of health department
which is playing its role positively.
Mr. Niazi said that there was no laxity of a least degree on the
part of health department regarding polio vaccination as the free
movement of people from Kunar province of Afghanistan through the
Arandu border into Chitral has made it vulnerable to the polio
He said that special attention must be paid to the southern part of
Chitral including Arandu, Ursoon, Beori, Damil, Jinjiret Koh,
Kalash valleys and Gobor which were on the border of Afghanistan.