KARACHI: The Sindh government in order to address the health issues of school children has decided to conduct blood screening of all the students receiving education in public and private sectors in the province once in a year.
“After going through the news reports of usage of narcotics by the students of educational institutions in federal capital I have become worried about the students receiving education and living in hostels in Sindh,” said Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah in his meeting with Director General Anti-Narcotic Force (ANF) Major General Musarrat Nawaz Malik here at the CM House.
The meeting was attended by Secretary Health Fazal Pechuho, Secretary Home Qazi Shahid Pervez, Principal Secretary to CM Sohail Rajput and Commander ANF Karachi Noorul Hassan.
“I want you [DG ANF] to help the Sindh government to combat this menace,” the CM asked DG ANF.
The DG ANF said that he was also conscious about the issue and his force has started working on it.
Musarrat Nawaz Malik said ANF needed support of the provincial government for which the CM’s guidance and approval was required.
Murad said his government had already launched a targeted operation against drug mafia. The ANF has to help the provincial government to eliminate the organized gangs involved in supply of narcotics items in the city, he added.
“When they [drug mafia] move unchecked they can penetrate anywhere particularly into the educational institutions,” he said and added “there should be a strong mechanism of surveillance for which police, Excise & Taxation would help and support ANF”.
The meeting also discussed that the blood screening of student receiving education in public and private sector is most important in terms of keeping an eye on their health issues.
“The government would bear the expenses of the students receiving education in public sector while educational institutions of private sector would be instructed to start a policy of screening of blood of each and every student at least once in a year,” he said and added that this policy would help control all kind of diseases such as Hepatitis etc.
The CM directed Secretary Health Fazal Pechuho to put up a proposal for the purpose and also instructed his principal secretary to issue his directives to the education department and work out a detailed plan and submit him for his approval.
The DG ANF invited Murad Ali Shah to inaugurate Benazir Bhutto Shaheed Model Addiction and Treatment Centre (MATRC) in Lyari constructed by the Sindh government for Rs 6 million which he accepted. The Sindh Chief Minister also approved the proposal to provide a building to ANF for establishment of MATRC at Sukkur.
The chief minister on the advice of DG ANF directed secretary health Fazal Pechuho to establish a 10-bed facility in each and every district hospital for treatment of drug addicts. “This is very necessary to have DHQ a designated facility for treatment of drug addicts,” he said.
Syed Murad Ali Shah issued directives to the Board of Revenue (BoR) to arrange 10 acres of land for ANF at Machko, District West to establish a police station.
A similar portion of land is also required to ANF for its police station at Hyderabad. A portion of defunct SRTC at Hyderabad was identified for which the chief minister directed his Principal Secretary Sohail Rajput to coordinate with transport department and provide them space to the ANF.
The chief minister also directed home secretary Qazi Shahid Parvez to coordinate between police, ANF and Excise departments for launching a coordinated operation against drug mafia operating in the city.
“I won’t allow them [drug mafia] to play with the lives of our innocent student/children. They are our future and it becomes our collective responsibility to keep them safe and secure from all the evils,” he vowed and urged the parents to support the government for the purpose.