Polio virus found in Lahore, Karachi sewers

Water samples from Peshawar did not indicate any presence of the paralysing virus.

Web Desk May 13, 2014
Samples from Peshawar did not indicate the presence of poliovirus.

KARACHI: Water samples taken from various parts of Pakistan indicate presence of poliovirus in Karachi and Lahore, Express News reported on Tuesday.

According to the polio virology lab at the National Health Institute, samples of sewage water collected from Lahore and Karachi were tested positive for the virus.

The samples taken on April 12, from Lahore’s Main Outfall pumping stations confirmed the presence of poliovirus. Traces of the virus were also discovered in three samples taken from Gadap, Machar Colony, Kahmeso Goth and Gulshan-e-Iqbal in Karachi.

Surprisingly, for the first time in the history of Pakistan, polio has not been discovered in sewage water samples taken from Peshawar.

With more than 90% of the current polio cases in the country genetically linked to Peshawar, it is considered the largest reservoir of endemic poliovirus in the world, according to a report by WHO published earlier this year.

On May 12, two fresh samples collected from children in Karachi and North Waziristan Agency were confirmed as poliovirus type 1, causing a rise in the tally of polio cases for the year to 61.

This tally includes 47 cases from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas, nine from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and five from Sindh.

Out of the five cases reported in Sindh this year, three have emerged from Gadap Town. Refusal rate is very high in this area along with the law and order situation which deters workers from visiting each house in the area hampering any efforts towards eradication of the virus.

Correction: In an earlier version of this story, the report was attributed to WHO. The error is regretted. 


Polpot | 8 years ago | Reply

@nero: "Before the world complains about Pakistanis spreading polio, they should realize Pakistan itself victim of polio." ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Pakistan is always the victim...no matter what. Thats almost an axiom.

nero | 8 years ago | Reply

Before the world complains about Pakistanis spreading polio, they should realize Pakistan itself victim of polio. Pakistan is the biggest victim of polio and is the front-line ally of the world fighting polio. Pakistan has lost $50 billion due to the polio fight. Unresolved issues like Cashmere and Palestine is causing Pakistani youth to get polio and can only be remedied with more people to people contact, and relaxed trade norms along with a Nuclear deal.

Polio is the next nuclear flashpoint issue in South Asia.

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