Punjab tightens restrictions
Staff Reporter Islamabad
The third wave of the coronavirus is showing no signs of abating as the coronavirus positivity ratio crossed 11% on Monday.
The National Command and Operation Centre data showed that 40,369 tests were conducted in the last 24 hours out of which 4,525 returned positive, taking the national positivity ratio to 11.21%.
The number of new cases take the national tally of positive coronavirus cases to 659,116.
Out of those 264,889 have been reported in Sindh, 215,227 in Punjab, 85,531 in KP, 56,450 in the federal capital, 19,525 in Balochistan, 12,484 in Azad Jammu and Kashmir and 5,010 in Gilgit Baltistan.
Pakistan also lost 41 people to the coronavirus with the most deaths occurring in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in the last 24 hours.
The NCOC on Monday also identified 19 districts of the country that have a high positivity ratio.
The identified districts were Swat (23%), Peshawar (22%), Nowshehra (19%), Lahore (17%), Rawalpindi (15%), Faisalabad (15%), Sargodha (12%), Sialkot (12%), Malakand (12%), Swabi (12%), Multan (12%), Mandi Bahauddin (11%), Gujranwala (10%), Okara (9%), Rahim Yar Khan (9%), Toba Tek Singh (9%), Bahawalpur (8%), Dir Lower (8%), Gujrat (7%).
Meanwile, the Punjab government announced on Monday that lockdowns will be enforced in districts with a Covid-19 positivity of more than 12 per cent from April 1 to curb the spread of the disease.
“The lockdown will continue till April 11,” said Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar while speaking to media.
He added that this will be reviewed by the cabinet committee on Covid-19 after seven days.
Buzdar stated that the provincial government will not impose any restrictions on economic activities or industries.
“The construction, transport, goods and industrial sectors will continue to operate as per regular according to standard operating procedures,” he said.
“It was also decided to close down the mass transit transport system which includes the Orange Line Metro Train and the Speedo bus service.”
There will be also a complete ban on indoor and outdoor dining at all restaurants and hotels, Buzdar said. “However, takeaway and home delivery will be allowed.”
He said that restrictions will continue to be in place on sporting, cultural and social activities. “Parks will be closed.
Commercial timings for bazaars and markets will be till 6pm, while shops will remain closed two days of the week.”
On the other hand, Polyclinic, the largest public-sector hospital in Islamabad, is facing a shortage of medical staff with a large number of healthcare workers quarantining after testing positive for the coronavirus, it emerged on Monday.
As many as 42 doctors, 72 nurses and 68 paramedical staff were placed in quarantine after contracting the virus, Abdul Jabbar Bhutto, a Polyclinic spokesperson, said.