NA passes unanimous resolution calling for polio eradication


Islamabad: The National Assembly Tuesday unanimously passed a resolution demanding the polio immunization programme may be implemented vigorously to make the country polio free as early as possible.

The resolution moved by Minister of State for National Health Service Saira Afzal Tarrar said all members of this assembly should monitor the Anti-Polio drive in their respective constituencies.

Earlier winding up debate on the polio eradication, the Minister of state assured that the federal government will extend full cooperation to the provincial governments in the fight against this crippling virus.

He said the federal government is in contact with the international partners as well as a summary has been forwarded to the prime minister to get a supplementary grant for the polio eradication programme.

She, however, said that responsibility rests with the provincial governments to provide security to the polio workers. She pointed out that there are no polio cases in Punjab and Balochistan but these are on the rise in Khyber Pakhtunkhawa.

Saira Afzal Tarrar clarified that the travel advisory of World Health Organization are only recommendations and not restrictions.

She said polio is a national issue and the parliamentarians should play their role in the anti polio campaign by monitoring the anti polio drive in their respective constituencies.

Holding discussion on the polio eradication campaign, the members called upon the federal and provincial governments to chalk out an effective policy to fight this crippling virus.

They said the polio cases are damaging image of the country in the outside world and there is a dire need to undertake serious efforts to purge the country of polio.

The members said religious scholars should be taken on board to remove suspicions and doubts surrounding the anti-polio drops. They emphasized the need for introducing necessary legislation to ensure immunization of children against polio and other diseases.

Highlighting the risks to the lives of polio workers, the members said anti polio campaign will not achieve success without removing concerns of polio workers regarding security and better salary package.

The National Assembly was informed on Tuesday that the government is working to promote standard of education and resolve the problems faced by the students.

Responding to a call attention notice moved by Tahira Aurangzeb, Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Sheikh Aftab Ahmad said that free of cost education is being provided to students up to metric level in Islamabad.

The Minister said process of printing of books has been resumed and soon the students will be provided with the required books free of cost.

The house passed a resolution urging the government not to retrench employees from any department. The resolution was moved by Syed Naveed Qamar.

Speaking on the resolution, Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Sheikh Aftab said it is the vision of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to eradicate unemployment from the country.

He said several projects are in the pipeline to create job opportunities for the youth. Construction of Economic Corridor from Gwadar to Khunjerab and motorways are the projects which will generate economic activity in the country.

Sheikh Aftab made it clear that the government is not considering to retrench employees from the public sector department. However, he said, this could not be said about those institutions which have financially collapsed.

In another resolution the house urged the government to take steps for establishment of an Engineering university in Sialkot.

The house also passed a resolution calling upon the government to review the decision about withdrawal of subsidy on commodities of daily use in Gilgit-Baltistan.

Speaking on the resolution, Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit Baltistan Barjees Tahir said subsidy is being given to the people of Gilgit Baltistan on wheat since 1972.

He said the present government is also continuing this subsidy and currently wheat subsidy of 5.5 billion rupees is being given to the people of the area.

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