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Maryam slams PTI over Sahiwal incident, keeps mum on HIV outbreak in Sindh

Maryam came hard on PTI over Sahiwal incident where eight children died after the air-conditioning unit broke down at a government hospital. However, she kept her silence over the worst outbreak of HIV in Sindh that has affected over 700 people, the majority of whom are children. “She [Maryam] is very touchy about children but this HIV outbreak must have skipped her mind,” the PML-N spokesperson said.

Sindh

News Desk |

Politics over dead bodies is not unusual. Often, the political leaders who ask others to refrain from doing politics over the dead are found to be doing exactly the same. Some, however, have learned how to come up with different approach over similar tragedies such as the HIV outbreak in Sindh.

In the latest case, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) vice president Maryam Nawaz was quick to slam the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government when the news emerged that eight children died after the air-conditioning unit broke down at a government hospital in Sahiwal.

However, in a bid to avoid annoying Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) with whom the PML-N plans to run an anti-government campaign after Eid ul Fitr, Maryam has kept her silence over the worst outbreak of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) in Sindh that has affected over 700 people, majority of whom are children.

In the first week of May, Sindh Health Minister Dr Azra Pechuho had informed the Sindh Assembly that an HIV-positive doctor has spread the HIV among patients in Ratodero of Larkana district.

On Sunday, the media reported, eight newborn babies died at the District Headquarters Hospital in Sahiwal after an air conditioning (AC) unit broke down. The Express Tribune reported that the hospital sources said five babies died a natural death, while three lost their lives apparently due to staff’s negligence after the air conditioning system in the children’s ward stopped working.

On the other hand, the scale of the HIV outbreak in Sindh not only shocked the entire country but also got the attention of World Health Organization (WHO), which has sent its team of experts to root out the cause of the disease and assist the provincial government in dealing with the crisis.

Surprisingly, Maryam, who is otherwise active on social media, did not say a single word. Apparently, she has turned a blind eye to the recent HIV outbreak in Ratodero, Larkana, which has remained a winning district for the PPP since past few decades.

Read more: The Rise of HIV positive cases in Larkana: Where is the…

Political analysts say that Maryam’s silence over the tragedy might be the effect of the recent Iftar dinner hosted by the PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari in the capital. She is making her re-entry into the political arena after the suspension of her sentence in the Avenfields Apartments reference, they said, without hitting the political nerve center of PPP.

Apart from Maryam, PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif and other party leaders have also kept mute over the haplessness of the people of Sindh.

Politics through Twitter

Maryam came down hard on PTI government over the incident, terming it a case of “criminal negligence”.

However, following the incident, Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar tweeted that a special committee was formed to probe the tragic incident. He has also sought a detailed report over the incident.

Meanwhile, Sahiwal deputy commissioner assured the provincial government that the incident was being investigated, adding that the air conditioning unit at the pediatric ward was later replaced with the one installed at the office of hospital’s medical superintendent.

The paper noted that it is quite flabbergasting that on the one hand PML-N holds Prime Minister Imran Khan responsible for governance failure not only on the federal level but also in the provinces of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK).

The outraged parents and relatives of the victims staged protests against the negligence of the hospital administration amid fears of an increase in the death toll.

HIV-Positive Doctor Transmitted HIV Among Patients in Larkana

In the first week of May, Sindh Health Minister Dr Azra Pechuho had informed the Sindh Assembly that an HIV-positive doctor has spread the HIV among patients in Ratodero of Larkana district.

“Dr Muzaffar Ghangharo, who runs a clinic in the area is himself an HIV-positive patient. He re-used a syringe and drip-set, transmitting the disease from one patient to another,” she told the lawmakers while quoting the findings of a committee’s report.

Read more: UN, WHO & UNAIDS join hands with Pakistan to combat HIV…

Later, the authorities announced that over the past two months, 681 people – including 576 children between two and 12 years old – have tested positive for HIV in Ratodero. On the request of Pakistan’s Ministry of Health, an international team of experts from the World Health Organisation (WHO) had arrived in Pakistan in the last week of May.

HIV Outbreak must have Skipped her Mind

PML-N spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb while talking to The Express Tribune said that she condemns the negligence that led to the worst outbreak of HIV in Larkana and that whoever is responsible should be taken to task.

The paper noted that it is quite flabbergasting that on the one hand PML-N holds Prime Minister Imran Khan responsible for governance failure not only on the federal level but also in the provinces of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) and Punjab the party has not even once been vocal about the sheer negligence of PPP in the interior Sindh that has ruined the lives of so many innocent people.

Read more: Doctor held for ‘spreading HIV’

When asked about Maryam Nawaz’s silence on the issue, Marriyum Aurangzeb told the paper, “She [Maryam] is very touchy about children but this HIV outbreak must have skipped her mind”.

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