Govt could seek Army’s help in implementation of Covid-19 SOPs

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Vaccinated people would be allowed to visit tourist resorts during Eidul Azha


Zubair Qureshi

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) on Health Dr Faisal Sultan on Monday said that the government could seek army’s help in ensuring compliance with non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

We would use whatever administrative help is required, said Dr Faisal Sultan while addressing a media briefing in Islamabad.

Sultan said it was necessary to ensure compliance of the current NPIs and the government would make efforts for that through two ways: Mass appeal to the nation to follow restrictions such as mask-wearing and avoiding crowds and administrative actions to increase compliance, particularly focusing on big cities and tourist destinations.
“We will take all administrative help for this as required, including the army’s help.”

Additionally, only vaccinated people will be allowed to visit tourist resorts during the upcoming Eid holidays and this requirement will be “strictly enforced” upon the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) and health ministry’s insistence, said Dr Sultan.

SAPM Sultan said vaccination was the only way to “protect our population from Covid-19 spread”.

SAPM Sultan in his message also said that the Covid-19 positivity rate had increased from two per cent to 4pc in the last few days, reported Radio Pakistan.

He attributed this to the violation of Covid-19 standard operating procedures and the presence of Covid-19 variants — particularly the Delta variant that was first discovered in India — which he said were impacting Pakistan’s current epidemic.

The NCOC has also confirmed the presence of different Covid-19 variants, including the Delta variant, in Pakistan.

At least 15 people were diagnosed with the variant in Rawalpindi district last week, according to Divisional Commissioner Syed Gulzar Hussain Shah.

Authorities have recommended smart lockdowns in 10 localities of Rawalpindi from where the Delta variant cases were reported.

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