As cases of the coronavirus continue to rise throughout the country, the Punjab government has ordered a lockdown in Lahore, Multan, Rawalpindi, and Faisalabad.
According to the notice, the lockdown will begin on Tuesday, August 3, and will last through August 31. After assessing the deteriorating condition of the pandemic in the nation, the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) decided to reimpose restrictions.
Markets and businesses will be permitted to operate till 8:00 p.m., according to a Punjab government announcement.
Exemptions have been granted by the provincial government to the following:
- Pharmacies/Medical stores, medical facilities, and vaccination centers, petrol pumps, tandoors, bakeries, milk/dairy shops, food (24 hours a day)
- Takeaways and e-commerce/Courier/Postal services and utility services (Electricity, Natural Gas, Internet, Cellular Networks/Telecom, Call Centers, Media).
- Auto workshops, Oil Depots, and all Kinds of Mandis including grain, fruit, cattle, and vegetable mandis.
Closed days: All business and commercial activities will remain closed on Saturdays and Sundays, as these will be observed as “closed days”. However, exemptions for the closed days are:
Indoor dining: The Punjab government has banned indoor dining.
Outdoor dining: Outdoor dining has been allowed till 10 pm.
Takeaways: The provincial government has allowed restaurants to provide customers with the takeaway service 24 hours a day
Weddings/Functions: Indoor weddings shall be banned w.e.f. August 8, 2021. Outdoor weddings shall be allowed with a maximum of 400 guests under strict COVID protocols. Timings for outdoor weddings shall be till 10:00 pm.
Shrines: The Punjab government has ordered the complete closure of shrines in the cities.
Cinemas: There shall be a complete closure of cinemas.
Gatherings: A ban has been imposed on all types of indoor gatherings including cultural, musical/religious/miscellaneous events. However, outdoor gatherings shall be allowed for a maximum 400 individuals under strict COVID protocols.
Sports: There shall be a complete ban on contact sports, which include (Karate, Boxing, Martial Arts, Rugby, Water Polo, Kabaddi & Wrestling).
Gyms: All gyms shall remain open only for vaccinated individuals/members.
Offices: Normal office working hours for public/private offices shall continue. However, the attendance level is reduced from 100% to 50%.
Public Transport: Maximum occupancy level of public transport has been reduced from 70% to 50%. Ban has now been imposed on all types of snacks being served to passengers during the journey by the transport services.
Railways: Rail services shall continue to operate with 70% occupancy under strict COVID protocols.
Recreation: All amusement parks, water sports, and swimming pools shall remain closed. However, public parks shall remain open under strict COVID protocols.
Extended Lockdown: Broader lockdowns with stringent enforcement protocols based on risk assessment shall continue.
Wearing of masks: All citizens shall compulsorily wear masks in public spaces.
Tourism: The policy of controlled tourism for vaccinated individuals shall continue.
The Punjab government, in its notification, clarified that industrial and agricultural activities and establishments will remain exempt from the lockdown.