Lady Health Workers Gunned Down In Bannu While Administering Polio Drops


A Lady Health worker (LHW), Bastaj Bibi, was killed by unknown attackers in Bannu.

According to police sources a firing incident took place in Nazeem Bazaar last night, in the jurisdiction of Basiakhel Police Station, which resulted in the killing of a LHW who was out administering polio vaccinations.

Bastaj Bibi was traveling in rickshaw when unknown armed men opened fire on her. The driver also got killed in the attack.

Police further said that the LHW was busy these three days because of the polio vaccination campaign.

Bastaj Bibi was working at a camp for temporarily displaced persons (TDPs) in the Bakakhel area of Bannu.

The assailants escaped after the crime but Police cordoned off the entire area and launched a search operation. However, no arrest was made during the search operation.

A three-day polio vaccination campaign had kicked off in Bannu on December 09.

This year, 94 polio cases have surfaced in Pakistan out of which Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has has 68. 22 are in Bannu, 19 in Lakki Marwat district and eight in Waziristan. Most of these cases have surfaced due to refusal of parents to administer polio vaccine to their children.

Vaccination efforts in KP are often compromised by the non-cooperation of parents and the security risks faced by polio workers. The non-cooperation of parents was main hurdle in the vaccination efforts. Even though attacks on polio workers and security personnel have occurred in the past, but recently no such attacks have taken place.

The recent attack on the LHW depicts the difficult situation that government has to navigate for the provision of the polio vaccination to each and every child.