Abdul Qayyum & Waqas Afridi

PESHAWAR: The government has initiated a process of administering coronavirus vaccine to people above 12 years of age. Students will be vaccinated in the first phase, while children working at different mills or workshops will be vaccinated in the second phase.

Fifteen-year-old Hamza, who works at a workshop in Peshawar due to poverty, told TNN that he knows about coronavirus pandemic, but he was not sure whether coronavirus vaccine is good for him or not at this young age. Inayat, the owner of the workshop, said he and his family have undergone coronavirus vaccination, but not even a single boy working at the workshops had got vaccination.

Hamza’s father said his two sons work at an automobile workshop because of poverty. He said his health condition is not good, so his sons have taken the responsibility to earn livelihood and make ends meet.

Imran Takkar, a social activist, has initiated a campaign in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to create awareness among the working people about the importance of coronavirus vaccination. He said children are often ignored in important policy decisions of the government. He said betterment of education system was must to eliminate the menace of child labour from the country.

Imran Takkar said most of the policies of government about children are initiated from schools, so it is important that every child is enrolled to remain informed about government initiatives.

The data of Elementary and Secondary Education Department shows that about 2.3 million children in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa are still out of school.

According to a spokesman for Commissioner Peshawar Division, the vaccination process of children is continuing in a phase-wise manner. The spokesman said schoolchildren will get vaccination in first phase, while working children will get it in second phase.

Sikandar Bakht, spokesperson for National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC), said while talking to TNN that the registration process for children possessing Form-B is the same which is in practice for those having CNICs. He said Pfizer vaccine will be administered to children on the CNICs of their parents.

Afghan children in Pakistan will get vaccination through proof of registration card or through passport number of their parents.

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