Islamabad: Two new polio cases have been reported in Pakistan with Punjab province and Karachi city registering their first case this year, taking the total number of affected people in the country to 38.

The infection in Punjab was found in the Choa Saidan Shah area of Chakwal district where a six-year-old boy has been diagnosed with polio, National Institute of Health’s Dr Rana Safdar said here yesterday. “The other polio victim is 18-month girl from Karachi’s Shafiq colony,” he said. Both the victims had received polio vaccines but still they suffered the attack of the virus. The boy had received 10 doses of the polio vaccine while the girl was given two or three doses, Safdar said.

The government is struggling to lift travel restriction on countrymen due to threat of poliovirus export. Pakistan and Afghanistan are the only two countries in the world which have not been able to eradicate the polio-virus while no case of polio virus was reported in Nigeria over a year. The restriction were imposed by the WHO last year. Refusal on the part of some parents and attacks at polio workers and volunteers remain the main reasons behind failure to eliminate the virus. Polio campaigns are usually postponed and suspended owing to security reasons in Pakistan volatile regions.

The government had declared a polio emergency throughout the province to root out the crippling virus from the region. Many people in Pakistan consider polio vaccine as a conspiracy by the West to sterile Muslims.

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