ISLAMABAD: On Thursday, the federal government decided to initiate the nationwide anti-polio campaign this month. According to details, the federal government has completed discussion with the provinces on the nationwide anti-polio campaign. However, the anti-polio drive will run in Azad Kashmir, Gilgit-Baltistan and four other provinces. Sources in the Ministry of Health said, in the first phase, the campaign will be launched in 34 districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa from September 17 to 21, while the second nationwide phase will be initiated from September 20 to 24. Moreover, in the third phase, the campaign in South Waziristan will be executed from September 27 to October 1, there will be a three-day anti-polio campaign and two days of catch-up campaigns across the country. The target has been set for anti-polio vaccination of 20.42 million children in Punjab, 9.35 million children in Sindh and 6.9 million children in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Furthermore, in Balochistan 2.53 million children, in Azad Kashmir 0.25 million children, in Gilgit-Baltistan 0.35 million children will be vaccinated against the paralysing disease, while 335,387 front-line workers will take part in the national anti-polio campaign. Concluding that 40 million children will be vaccinated in the national anti-polio campaign, children in the age group of 6 to 59 months will be vaccinated with Vitamin A and the purpose of Vitamin A vaccination is to improve the immunity of children. Earlier, in June, Prime Minister Imran Khan had expressed the hope that Pakistan will become polio free next year.