Polio rears its head again in western Uttar Pradesh

July 28th, 2008 - 11:29 pm ICT by IANS  

Lucknow, July 28 (IANS) Uttar Pradesh health authorities will launch special rounds of the polio eradication drive, especially in Badaun and its adjoining district, after the reappearance of the highly infectious polio strain virus - P1 - for the second time, officials said Monday. Meenakshi Thakur, a 14-month old girl of Badaun, has tested positive for the P1 polio strain. A month and a half earlier, a 12-year-old girl from the same district was found afflicted by the same strain.

“With the re-emergence of the P1 strain we have decided to launch special drives in Badaun and its adjoining districts, including Bareilly and Saharanpur,” regional team leader of the World Health Organisation’s National Polio Surveillance Project S.K. Parthyarch told IANS.

The special drives will help control the transmission of the virus to a considerable extent, he added.

Meenakshi’s case is the second in Uttar Pradesh and the eighth in the country this year, officials said.

Health officials attribute the re-emergence of the virus to the unhygienic conditions in parts of the district. The officials said Meenakshi, who was vaccinated against polio, caught the infection as she was ill. “Probably, during illness the immunity of Meenakshi was lowered and her body could not counter the virus attack,” reasoned Parthyarch.

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