polio-dropsScores of frightened parents in Khyber district on Tuesday refused to feed polio vaccine to their children, following a fabricated incident in Peshawar. It is to be mentioned here that last day, approximately 1,000 children of two private schools of Mashu Khel, Badhber,-the suburb areas of Peshawar- had allegedly got ill after being administered anti-polio drops.The news spread on the social media in the entire country in no time. In spite of the clarification by the health officials that the vaccine was safe, a number of parents announced their boycott to anti-polio drops.In a video, the health minister was seen taking the polio drops, challenging the negative rumours about the polio drops, but to no avail. The rumours have had deeper and wider impact on other areas. Ali Said, resident of Meri Khel, Zakha Khel said that they were regularly feeding polio vaccine to the children. But previous day rumours scared the parents. On the 2nd day of the anti-polio drive, when the polio workers approached to their village, the parents refused to feed their children. “When their confidence is restored that the vaccine is harmless and doesn’t affect child health, they (parents) will restart feeding it to their children”, he remarked. Local polio official in Landi Kotal while providing details said that thousands of children were denied anti-polio drops. He added that temporary refusals were belonging to localities of Khuga Khel, Shiekhmal Khel, Piro Khel, Shelman, Zakha Khel etc.On a query he said that although, the campaign was carried out with assistance of security personnel. But keeping in view the current uncertain situation, they could not force the temporary refusal of parents. On the condition of anonymity, a polio worker in Sultan Khel said that as part of routine polio campaign, he visited every house of the assigned village but ironically, maximum number of parents negated to vaccinate their children. The parents were on the view that the current polio drive terrified them as it suffered school children in Peshawar, he added and said that in next campaign, they would be prepared to administer anti-polio vaccine to their children. When agency surgeon Dr.Ayub was contacted on the matter, he said that they were facing nearly 80% refusal in the entire districts in ongoing anti-polio campaign but they continued it and would complete the seven days long anti-polio drive.