Covid-19: Pakistan bans food on flights; decision about schools’ closure on Monday


ISLAMABAD – In an effort to stem the fifth wave of the coronavirus fuelled by the Omicron variant, Pakistan has decided to ban the serving of meals onboard all flights.

The decision was taken in a meeting of the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) as the Covid-19 positivity rate in the country crossed 8 percent.

The ban in severing of meals in flights and public transport will come into effect on January 17 (Monday) when NCOC has also called a meeting of all provincial education ministers to discuss the existing Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for the education sector, public gatherings and others.

Reports said that the top coronavirus monitoring body will also review whether the prevalent coronavirus situation warrants the closures of schools in the country.

NCOC has also asked the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) to ensure the implementation of Covid-19 SOPs at all airports across the country.

Earlier in the day, the Sindh government ruled out closing of educational institutions in the province amid rising number of Covid-19 cases.

The decision comes as Karachi’s positivity ratio reached 35.30%. The Sindh health department said 430 infections of the Omicron variant have been detected in Karachi.

Pakistan reported another 4,286 coronavirus cases on January 14, the highest since August 25 when it recorded 4,553 infections.

The country’s positivity ratio was recorded at 8.16% during the last 24 hours, also the highest since August 11.

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