Rights Watch | 12th August 2020

Rights Watch

Senate reviews child protection laws

Senate Special Committee on Child Protection met on Tuesday to review recent child abuse cases, with representatives from the Mansehra and Nowshera police forces present to brief the committee on the recent instances of child abuse that occurred in these areas. The committee itself was created after a child abuse case that took place in Manshera in December last year; this case was also reviewed in the committee session. The committee eventually concluded that there are major loopholes in child abuse laws, which need to be eliminated so that investigations can be more efficient and also provide justice to victims more quickly.

Fourth Congo virus case in Lahore

Pakistan’s 4th Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) case of the year appeared at Jinnah Hospital on August 11. The deadly tick-borne disease, which is transmitted to human beings from animals, especially livestock, is extremely contagious. This means that patients are kept in isolation wards so that they cannot pass on the virus to other patients or to medical personnel who are treating them. A young man with the disease has been identified at Jinnah Hospital, where he appeared with severe symptoms and then tested positive. He has been isolated and is now being treated for CCHF.

PM & Bill Gates discuss the health situation

Prime Minister Imran Khan had a conversation with billionaire Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, on August 11, where they spoke on several healthcare-related issues, particularly regarding Pakistan’s Covid-19 response. The PM also spoke to the billionaire philanthropist on restarting Pakistan’s earlier polio vaccination campaign, since Pakistan hasn’t been able to eradicate the disease and is now one of only two countries where polio is still endemic.

Ban on plastic bags in Lahore

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released instructions for the Lahore business to stop using polythene bags. This comes after the Lahore High Court ordered a ban on major businesses and stores using dangerous polythene bags. A task force has been created by the EPA to implement the LHC ruling and ensure that businesses obey the new rules. The taskforce has been delivering the message to major stores, hotels, malls, and other businesses like open markets, and working with those in charge to find alternatives for polythene bags, which none of these businesses will be allowed to use after 2 weeks.