Punjab Govt tightens Covid-19 restrictions

Staff Reporters

Authorities in Punjab on Saturday imposed new restrictions in the province to curtail the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic and have announced that commercial activities will close at 6pm everyday till the restrictions stay in effect.

All business centres will close at 6pm and will not be permitted to operate on weekends.

The policy of 50pc work from home for both public and private offices has also been enforced.

These restrictions will stay in effect till March 29.Medical services, pharmacies, medical stores, laboratories, collection points will be open 24 hours a day and throughout the week, including grocery stores, general stores, mills, fruit and vegetable shops and fuel stations.

Both outdoor and indoor dining in Lahore, Rawalpindi, Sargodha, Faisalabad, Multan, Gujranwala and Gujrat will remain closed during the time period. Only takeaways will be allowed.

All marriage halls, marquees and event centres in these cities will also be closed from March 15.

Outdoor marriages will be allowed with an upper limit of 300 guests. All cinemas and shrines will also remain shut across the province.

Authorities also said that sports, cultural and other events will not be allowed either. Filling plants, workshops, spare parts, agricultural machinery and equipment shops can also remain open.

The Punjab Auqaf department announced that Lahore’s Data Darbar and in total, 547 shrines located across the province have been closed till April 15.

Meanwhile, the manager of the Data Darbar said that the shrine’s mosque will only be opened for prayers.

He added that all the coronavirus standard operating procedures will be followed during the prayers.

Meanwhile, Deputy Commissioner of Peshawar Capt. (Retd) Khalid Mahmood announced micro-smart lockdowns in four areas of Peshawar including Hayatabad Phase 1 Street No.9, Hayatabad Phase 6 Street No.5, Gulbahar No.4 Street 3 and Defense Colony Street No.11.

With the objective of limiting the spread of the virus, the micro-smart lockdowns will be implemented within specific streets and smaller localities as per the policy and directives of the federal government.

In the lockdown-imposed areas, only general stores selling essentials such as groceries and medicines or emergency services may remain open and more than five people will not be allowed to offer congregational prayer within mosques.

Legal action will to be taken against individuals violating stated regulations.