MUZAFFARABAD: Delayed by the Covid-19 pandemic, the polio vaccination drive in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) will commence today (Monday) until the evening of Sept 25, the task force on eradication of polio was informed at a meeting here.

The meeting was presided over by Chief Secretary Dr Shehzad Bangash who called upon all concerned departments and officials to play their role with a missionary spirit for the success of the five-day drive to make AJK a polio free territory.

Vaccination teams should also be deployed at the entry points to administer drops to all children entering the AJK territory over the next five days, he said.

Mr Bangash said officials executing the polio eradication campaign should not overlook the threat posed by the resurgence of Covid-19.

Earlier, officials informed the meeting that Covid-19 had delayed the polio eradication campaign in the current year but added that this drive would be conducted every month from now onwards.

The officials said a third-party monitoring was used to ensure transparency and efficacy of the drive.

They also said 2,615 mobile and 422 stationary teams would administer drops to a target population of 669,448 in 220 union councils across AJK. The team members would be provided personal protective gear to protect themselves from Covid-19, they said.

Published in Dawn, September 21st, 2020