Centre debates next step as Covid-19 cases rise, 15-day lockdown under consideration

PM Imran to convene meeting of the NCC to review situation

Aamir Khan May 27, 2020
PM Imran is being briefed on the current situation, say sources. Photo: File

KARACHI:







The federal government is considering how to proceed in light of the rising number of coronavirus cases in the country. The options up for consideration on Wednesday included a 15-day lockdown or increasing use of the smart lockdown technique in the following days.


Government sources claim that the prime minister is being briefed on the current situation, and a meeting of the NCC will be called soon. It will be chaired by the prime minister.

Given the rapid rise in Covid-19 cases, the government fears that the situation may spiral out of control in the coming days. Concerns have been expressed that during Eidul Fitr and in the days preceding it, SOPs were not followed and several new cases have emerged.

Up for debate is a smart lockdown, which would entail a strict lockdown in areas with a high number of cases, and a more relaxed lockdown with SOPs where the cases are fewer.

A complete two-week lockdown is also being considered, say government sources.

Besides, the decision to allow businesses to operate till 5 pm may also be revisited, they claim.

The situation will be reviewed during the NCC meeting, which will also have representatives of all four provinces, Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir in attendance.

The meeting will discuss various strategies to ensure implementation of SOPs moving forward as well as possible lockdown scenarios.

A decision will be reached keeping in view all aspects, economic and health, and with the consultation of stakeholders, maintain the sources.

As of now, the nationwide tally of coronavirus cases stands at 59,850 and the number of fatalities has also been rising steadily.






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