Umar rules out imposition of complete lockdown

ISLAMABAD: NCOC Chief Asad Umar, while ruling out imposition of complete lockdown during the fourth wave of coronavirus, said on Thursday that the government would not impose complete lockdown during the fourth wave of coronavirus pandemic, which he feared would start in the current month of July.

Addressing an oath taking ceremony of newly-appointed members of the National Youth Council (NYC), he said that during the past waves of coronavirus, the government’s strategy to handle the pandemic and overcome its after-effects had been very successful and the country was placed among the best three performing countries by the Economist’s Normalcy Index for handling it.

The minister urged the people to keep on following the standard operating procedure (SOPs) and vaccinate themselves to cope with the fourth wave in an effective manner.

The minister, however, added that in case, the ratio of positive cases goes up, the government would opt for smart lockdown as was done during the past phase.

The minister said the NCOC, through a letter, informed the Kashmir Election Commission about violation of coronavirus SOPs during the ongoing election campaigns.

Meanwhile, Umar appreciated the efforts of the Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Youth Affairs, Usman Dar, and congratulated the newly-elected members of the NYC.

The minister said it was very important to know the issues of youth from them, arguing that one could only understand problems of the people by consulting those who faced them and then came with proper solutions.

The minister expressed satisfaction the NYC had representation from all federating units and without any gender discrimination.

He said that a lot of work had been done in providing skills to youth; however, highlighted the importance of engaging the youth to tap their potential.

The coronavirus positivity ratio in Pakistan has once again steadily started going up as the country, on Thursday, reported 1,683 Covid-19 cases in the past 24 hours with a positivity ratio of 3.33 percent, latest figures released by the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) revealed.

According to the NCOC, the Covid-19 positivity ratio during the past 24 hours remained 3.33 percent as the country conducted 50,531 tests of which 1,683 were positive.

Sindh and Punjab reported the most deaths.

The country also reported 24 coronavirus deaths in the past 24 hours of which 15 people died on ventilators.

For the past few days, the Covid-19 cases in the country are gradually increasing, and at present, nationwide active coronavirus cases are 34,531.

A day earlier, Pakistan’s coronavirus positivity rate passed the three percent mark for the first time in 20 days.

The country recorded a positivity rate of 3.27 percent. Last time the positivity rate was three percent on June 17.

According to a province-wise breakdown of the cases, the total active cases in Sindh are 17,959, in Punjab 17,180, in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa 10,011, in the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) 2,859, in Balochistan 714, in Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) 522, and 1,286 in the Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK).

So far, 910,609 people have recovered across Pakistan, making it a significant count.

At present, 201 patients are on ventilators countrywide, while there is no patient on ventilator in Balochistan, AJK, and GB.

The total number of deaths has reached 22,493, while the total number of cases figure stands at 967,633.

Out of 50,531 tests conducted across the country on Wednesday, 17,959 Covid-19 tests were carried out in Sindh, 17,180 in Punjab, 10,011 in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KPK), 2,859 in the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT), 714 in Balochistan, 522 in GB, and 1,286 in the AJK.

Around 910,609 people have recovered from the disease so far across Pakistan, making it a significant count with over 90 percent recovery ratio of the affected patients.

Since the pandemic outbreak, a total of 967,633 cases were detected including the deaths, recovered and under treatment Covid-19 patients so far.

Punjab with 347,347 cases is on top, followed by Sindh with 343,303 cases, KPK with 138,855 cases, the ICT with 83,259 cases, Balochistan with 27,502 cases, AJK with 20,728 cases, and GB with 6,639 cases.

Of 22,493 Covid-19 deaths recorded in the country since the pandemic outbreak, Punjab with 10,798 deaths is on top of which seven deaths were reported in the past 24 hours, followed by Sindh with 5,552 deaths of which 16 died in the past 24 hours, KPK with 4,346 deaths, ICT with 781 deaths, AJK with 590 deaths of which one died in the past 24 hours, Balochistan with 315 deaths, and GB with 111 deaths is on the bottom of the list.

A total of 14,911,743 corona tests have been conducted so far, while 639 hospitals are equipped with Covid facilities across the country.

Some 2,235 corona patients were admitted to the hospitals.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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