So­lar kids shifted to La­hore for fur­ther tests, treat­ment

Pakistan Observer - - TWIN CITIES -

ZUBAIR QURESHI ISLAMABAD—Af­ter spend­ing three weeks, the so­lar kids of Balochis­tan have been shifted to La­hore for fur­ther treat­ment. Talk­ing to me­dia, Vice Chan­cel­lor of the Sha­heed Zul­fiqar Ali Bhutto Med­i­cal Uni­ver­sity (PIMS) said the boys have been shifted to La­hore for fur­ther treat­ment and tests. “We have also car­ried out a num­ber of tests here and hope to get a clear pic­ture of their dis­ease shortly,” said he. Shoaib and Ab­dul Rashid, the so­lar kids as they are called, will be ad­mit­ted at Cen­tre of Ex­cel­lence Molec­u­lar Bi­ol­ogy (CEMB) La­hore where a team of highly qual­i­fied doc­tors would con­duct their tests and treat­ment.

Be­ing a unique case, it has been de­cided to pri­or­i­tize their treat­ment and launch a web­site and up­load de­tails of the case and the course of treat­ment to I, said het. Johns Hop­kins Uni­ver­sity in the USA and the Na­tional Hos­pi­tal for Ner­vous Dis­eases in the UK have been ap­proached and asked to col­lab­o­rate in di­ag­nos­ing the chil­dren. A well-known med­i­cal jour­nal Lancet has also shown in­ter­est in pub­lish­ing a study of the case,” the VC said. Dr Akram said that sam­ples for five DNA anal­y­sis tests will be sent to the UK and USA in or­der to seek a sec­ond opin­ion and to help in diag- nos­ing the case.

The case of the three broth­ers came to light late last month when re­ports emerged of them wak­ing up nor­mal and ac­tive ev­ery day and then los­ing en­ergy as the day pro­gressed with them be­ing paral­ysed by sun­set. Be­cause they are only ac­tive dur­ing the day, the chil­dren were nick­named ‘so­lar kids’ by the vil­lagers. On Fri­day, they were called by Pres­i­dent Mam­noon Hus­sain to the Ai­wan-eSadr where Pres­i­dent gave them and their fa­ther, Muham­mad Hashim, a re­cep­tion. How­ever, Hashim was not happy af­ter meet­ing the pres­i­dent.

“I had thought he would an­nounce some as­sis­tance pack­age for my chil­dren’s fu­ture and fi­nan­cial aid for the fam­ily, which did not hap­pen,” he had re­port­edly told me­dia. Iron­i­cally Hashim said this on the day when he re­ceived a cheque of Rs50,000 from the Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor of Pak­istan Bait-ul-Maal Bar­ris­ter Abid Wa­heed Sheikh.

Be­sides, var­i­ous me­dia groups, in­di­vid­u­als and or­ga­ni­za­tions, phi­lan­thropists also sup­ported him with money and paid ex­penses of his chil­dren’s med­i­cal bills, though most of them were gov­ern­ment-sponsored.

The two older boys were first moved to the Pak­istan In­sti­tute of Med­i­cal Sciences (Pims) be­fore their de­par­ture for La­hore here on Sun­day, and the younger of the sib­lings af­fected by the dis­ease, who is just one-year old and has just started show­ing symp­toms, is in the vil­lage with his mother.

State min­is­ter for Cap­i­tal De­vel­op­ment and Ad­min­is­tra­tion Di­vi­sion (CADD) Dr Tariq Fazal Chaudhry had also paid a visit to the chil­dren in the hos­pi­tal and an­nounced that the gov­ern­ment would be pay­ing for the boys’ treat­ment, even if they were to be sent abroad.

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