All schools and colleges in Lahore have been closed for 10 days on Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif order to protect students from dengue infection. Aitchison College administration has refused to close for 10 days. The administration has also refused to allow students to wear full sleeves shirts. An official in the Education Department, speaking on the condition of anonymity told The Express Tribune that Aitchison College has refused to close the school for 10 days. Aitchison College Principal Fakir Ijazuddin wasn’t available for his comments.
A spokesman for the Education Department told The Express Tribune that a notification in this regard had been issued, adding that the decision to reopen schools and colleges would be taken 10 days later. He said if the situation couldn’t be controlled by that time the vacations may be extended.
Universities, however, haven’t announced any vacations. Lahore College for Women University, University of Education, Government College University, Punjab University and others will remain open. A Health Department official said that all schools and colleges will be fumigated during the vacations. Schools secretary Aslam Kamboh said that 100 spray machines had been purchased for schools and necessary arrangements had been completed. Meanwhile, 499 new dengue cases were reported in Lahore on Tuesday. Another 512 people were suspected of being carriers. In Punjab, 559 dengue cases were reported on Tuesday. According to Health Department figures, the number of dengue positive cases has reached 4,327 in Punjab while in Lahore it has climbed to 3,928.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has instructed all public hospitals to convert their administrative blocs into dengue wards to accommodate dengue patients. A spokesman of Auqaf Department on Tuesday announced that administration of Data Darbar Hospital will provide free of cost medical treatment facilities to dengue patients and 24-hours facilities for dengue fever patients would be available. A 20-bed dengue ward fully equipped with all kind of instruments, medicines, mosquito nets and three daily meals for dengue patients have been arranged.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 14th, 2011.