Polio risk increases in Rawalpindi


After teachers’ refusal to administer polio drops, making the polio campaigns successful would be a challenge as Rawalpindi is one of the high-risk districts of Punjab where over 598,000 children under the age of five years will be vaccinated.
It should be mentioned here that most of the staff members are taken from government schools including female teachers and schoolteachers have refused to be part of vaccination campaigns due to sense of insecurity and meagre financial benefits.
The court decision in teachers’ favour that no disciplinary action should be taken against any teachers refusing the polio duties has further strengthened their stance in this connection.
Teachers had moved the LHC two months back after refusing to administer polio drops.
They had demanded that the district administration should provide them security, increase the remunerations and assign them duty in their nearest union councils but they were allotted duties without their consent.
Sagheer Alam, the president of the teachers’ association, said that teachers would be no more part of the polio campaign because the incentives are too less and security of female teachers is a serious matter of concern.
Teachers were of the view that their absence from classroom affects the education of students, saying that government should hire staff for administering polio drops and other activities like duties at polling stations in election.
Sources said that more than 2,000 out of the 3,200 polio staff are teachers and their refusal to participate in these campaigns would be a big challenge for the district administration during the upcoming vaccination campaign starting from November 12.