MANSEHRA, Jan 18: The district health department has handed over all the 58 basic health units (BHUs) to the People's Primary Healthcare Initiative (PPHI) under an agreement for effective delivery of health services in Mansehra.

Sources in the health department said on Wednesday that the PPHI would not only enhance healthcare services at these units, but also monitor campaigns carried out against polio and other diseases in district.

They said that the PPHI would pay salaries to the health and other staff of these BHUs. They said that surveillance officers would also be appointed at each health unit to ensure transparency in their work.

Meanwhile, an NGO organised a seminar here on Wednesday to seek greater role of religious leaders in creating awareness of harmful effects of polio.

Religious leaders from different parts of the district on the occasion showed their commitment to take active part in the polio eradication drive. Speaking on the occasion, Dr Ijaz Shah, Dr Mohammad Farooq and others said that people from all walks of life should jointhe drive against polio. They said that prayer leaders could play an effective role in polio eradication.

ABSENTEE TEACHERS: The district development advisory committee (DDAC) here has decided to take legal action against teachers drawing salaries without performing duties.

'We are going to take legal action against teachers of over 100 schools in Mansehra,' said MPA Habibur Rehman Tanoli, the committee chairman, while speaking to media persons the other day.

Mr Tanoli said that he had taken up the issue of 'ghost schools' with the provincial government, and the district education department was asked to submit a complete report in this regard. He said that he had also sought a report about the ghost schools and the absenting teachers.

The DDAC chairman said that about 200 male and female teachers were drawing salaries without performing duty. He said that a large number of such teachers were not attending schools for last many years.

Mr Tanoli said the EDO education would soon submit a complete reportabout the ghost schools and a list of absenting teachers and then the law would take its course. He also asked the people to provide information about ghost schools.

ROADS BLOCKED: Several roads in Kaghan valley blocked at various places following heavy snowfall and landslides remained snowbound for the fourth day.

The Kawai-Naran section of MansehraNaran-Jalkhad road, which was blocked at various places on Saturday after heavy snowfall in the valley, could not be cleared.

Mohammad Javed told reporters that because of the closed routes people were stranded in the upper parts of the valley and could not travel to Balakot and other parts of Hazara.

The link roads in Siren, Konsh and Allai valleys and hilly areas of Kohistan, Torghar and Battagram districts also remained closed to traffic, causing inconvenience to the people of these areas.

Meanwhile, doctors say that hospitals in the region are daily receiving patients, most of them children and old people, with symptoms of respiratory tract infections.

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