PESHAWAR: In a shocking development which may impact the vaccination campaign in Peshawar, female polio workers in the metropolis have accused senior officers of harassment and demanded their removal.

They have threatened to boycott the upcoming polio vaccination campaign if action was not taken against the accused officers.

On Saturday, female polio workers held a protest during which they alleged that senior officers make unnecessary phone calls to them and make immoral demands. They alleged that senior officials make them phone calls after duty and ask them to attend so-called meeting anytime.

A protesting female polio worker alleged that senior officials make immoral demands and threaten them to expel them from job if they did not comply. She alleged that officials make their videos during the vaccination campaigns and then blackmail them. She said several female polio workers are facing depression due to this attitude of senior officials.

“We are going through a difficult period and the situation has become intolerable for us. How can we tolerate constant harassment and blackmailing? Some officials claim they have videos of female workers and they would share the same with their family members and colleagues if they did not accept their immoral demands,” she alleged. She said nothing is more important than honour of a woman, and they cannot perform their duties if their honour is under threat.

The women polio workers said they have filed complaints against the harassers with higher authorities and related offices, but no action has been taken. They alleged that officials involved in harassment have ganged up and they have expelled several workers from job over not accepting their demands.

Another polio worker alleged that women are being harassed under the patronage of officers of CTC and no one is taking action against them.

“We cannot work under such a stressful situation. We cannot focus on our work and we may quit if the situation did not change,” she said.

The polio workers have demanded the health minister, Health Department, Expanded Program for Immunisation, and other high-ups to take notice of the grave situation and provide justice to victim women. They said all the female polio workers will boycott the upcoming vaccination campaign if action was not taken against harassers.

 

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