Provinces in Pakistan announce complete Covid-19 lockdown during Eid: Report
The administrations of Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) have announced to enforce a complete lockdown in their respective regions from May 8 to 15 to contain the spread of coronavirus during the Eid-ul-Fitr holidays in Pakistan, a media report said on Thursday.
The announcements come as the country continues to witness a tremendous surge in the number of the coronavirus despite the measures being taken by the government, the Express Tribune reported.
"The public transport, tourist destinations, parks, business and shopping malls and markets will remain closed during the eight-day lockdown," Punjab Health Minister Yasmin Rashid said.
She said to ensure complete lockdown police, Rangers, and Army personnel will be deployed in the province in line with the decision of the National Command and Operations Centre (NCOC) to restrict movement of people during the Eid holidays.
Rashid said that pharmacies, medical stores, coronavirus vaccination centres, petrol pumps, food takeaways, small grocery stores, dairy, vegetable and fruit shops and meat shops will remain open during the lockdown.
Notices regarding the lockdowns were also issued by the administration of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh and PoK.
Planning Minister Asad Umar, who heads the NCOC, had said recently that stricter precautionary measures along with an expanded vaccination drive have had a positive impact.
The pandemic first emerged in the country in February last year. It started ebbing in July after seeing its peak in June, the report said.
However, the cases spiked towards the end of the year, dubbed by the experts as the second wave.
The third wave of the disease started in March, the report added.
So far over 18,537 COVID-19 deaths have been reported in Pakistan since the beginning of the pandemic last year while the number of active Covid-19 cases is 845,833 as of May 5, media reports said.