New Delhi: Barely a fortnight after 58 people in Uttar Pradesh’s Unnao district were tested positive for HIV, the deadly disease has now plagued a village in Pakistan’s Punjab where 22 people have been tested positive.
The incident came to light on Thursday when Pakistan’s Punjab Health Department conducted a test in a remote area of Kot Imrana in Sargodha district. Of the 80 people, including women and children, who had undergone the test, 22 were tested positive for HIV.
While quack Rajesh Yadav was held responsible for spreading the virus by using a single syringe in Unnao’s Bangermau area, the government doctors in Pakistan suspect that the virus broke out in the village due to a 'local practitioner', Allah Ditta, who himself was an AIDS patient.
“Allah Ditta was himself an AIDS patient. He was an addict and is known for using used syringes. He recently passed away, but was the main reason for the outbreak,” Punjab Health Department’s Chief Executive Dr Nusrat Riaz was quoted as saying by Pakistani news channel Geo News.
According to a report in Daily Pakistan, quack Allah Ditta started treating patients nearly 15 years ago.
Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif has ordered blood test of every person living in the village, and the area has been declared highly sensitive.
Daily Pakistan reported that the provincial government dispatched a team of doctors to Kot Imrana after a village elder, Chaudhry Mohammad Akram, had written to Punjab CM earlier this week, drawing his attention towards the spread of the disease in their area where 600 out of 5,000 residents had been tested positive in the recent past.