ISLAMABAD/KARACHI/LAHORE/PESHAWAR/QUETTA/MUZAFFARABAD: The novel coronavirus emerged in the central China city of Wuhan towards the end of last year and proliferated to almost the whole world within a couple of months. It’s not the virulence or fatality, but the infectivity of the new virus – also known as SARS-CoV-2 – that has set off a global frenzy.
The Covid-19 respiratory illness caused by this mysterious contagion has so far infected more than 7.4 million people in 202 countries and territories of the world – and over 418,000 of them have died and counting.
Pakistan, despite its close proximity with China, remained coronavirus-free until February 26 when a young man from Karachi tested positive after returning from Iran – one of the worst-hit countries. After a brief hiatus following the first case, Covid-19 cases spiked as more pilgrims returning from Iran tested positive for the virus.
Nearly one-and-a-half months after imposing the lockdown across the country, Prime Minister Imran Khan announced to ease the lockdown in phases.
The nationwide tally of Covid-19 patients stands at 142,306 with 52,601 cases in Punjab, 53,805 in Sindh, 18,013 in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, 8,177 in Balochistan, 1,129 in Gilgit-Baltistan, 7,934 in Islamabad and 647 in Azad Jammu and Kashmir.
The virus has claimed at least 2,664 lives while around 51,735 coronavirus patients have recovered.
The situation remains fluid and we’re updating stats as soon as new figures are officially released.
Follow The Express Tribune’s live coverage of the pandemic here.
12:40am: Pakistan's Covid-19 tally surpasses 142,000
The nationwide tally of Covid-19 patients surpassed 142,000 on Sunday as there has been an exponential increase in cases since the start of the current month while the death toll from the disease exceeded 2,600.
The tally of cases in Sindh has moved past 53,000 after 2,287 new cases were confirmed.
Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah said 11,197 tests were conducted in the last 24 hours, of which 2,287 came back positive.
11:05pm: 38 new Covid-19 cases raise G-B tally to 1,129
38 more people have contracted novel coronavirus in Gilgit-Baltistan to bring the region’s tally to 1,129.
The virus has claimed 16 lives while 716 patients have recovered in the region thus far. Active cases stand at 397.
10:38pm: One more dies of Covid-19 as 43 fresh cases take AJK tally to 647
Health officials in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) have confirmed another casualty due to coronavirus in the past 24 hours to bring the state’s death toll to 13.
They also reported 43 new infections to raise the cases tally to 647.
With four more patients recovering within the span of 24 hours, total recoveries rise to 254. Active cases stand at 380 in the region.
10:20pm: 14 more die of coronavirus with 563 new infections in K-P
The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa health department has confirmed another 14 fatalities due to Covid-19 in the past 24 hours to bring the provincial death toll to 675.
Five deaths were reported in Peshawar, two in Nowshera, two in Malakand, and one each in Dir Upper, Khyber, Battagram, Karak and DI Khan.
563 new cases – 2 from Int'l flights – were also reported, taking the total to 18,013 in K-P.
Meanwhile, 248 more patients recovered, taking the tally to 4,539. 102,267 tests have been conducted in the province so far.
563 new cases (2 from Int'l flights) taking total to 18,013 in KP. 14 more lives were lost (5 Peshawar, 2 Nowshera, 2 Malakand, 1 Dir Upper, 1 Khyber, 1 Battagram, 1 Karak, 1 DI Khan) taking total to 675. 248 patients recovered taking total to 4,539. 102,267 tests conducted in KP pic.twitter.com/Aj7Wt3NBIF— Health Department KP (@HealthKPGovt) June 14, 2020
9:30pm: Balochistan reports two more deaths, 149 new coronavirus cases
The Balochistan health department has confirmed another two fatalities due to Covid-19 in the past 24 hours to bring the provincial death toll to 85.
It also reported 149 new cases of coronavirus to take the province’s tally to 8,177.
2,859 patients have recovered in the province so far.
7:50pm: Coronavirus cases could reach 1.2m by end of next month, warns Asad
Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar on Sunday expressed fear that coronavirus cases could surge up to 1.2 million by end of July if strict action was not taken against violators of standard operating procedures (SOPs), issued by the government to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
“By the middle of June, we have around 150,000 cases, if such situation prevails and no change is made then, according to the experts, the number could be increased by two folds to 300,000 by end of current month and could also be surged up to around one million to 1.2 million by end of next month,” Asad said in a media briefing after chairing meeting of National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on Covid -19 in Islamabad.
“This is, of course, a matter of worry but the good thing is that we have the capability to avoid such a situation by taking administrative actions.”
Read more here
4:45pm: No cattle markets to open in Sindh for Eidul Azha
The Sindh government has decided not to permit cattle markets in the province for Eidul Azha.
In a letter written to the home department, Local Government Secretary Roshan Ali Shaikh said that in light of rising coronavirus cases in the province cattle markets cannot be allowed to open. He requested that all such permits be revoked.
The local government department withdrew its earlier recommendation of permitting cattle markets to open.
4:00pm: K-P CM inquires after PA speaker, MPAs health
Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mehmood Khan inquired after the health of Provincial Assembly Speaker Muhstaq Ghani, and MPAs Ayesha Bano and Sameera Shams.
The public representatives from K-P have tested positive for Covid-19.
3:45pm: Two PIA special flights repatriate 280 citizens from Jeddah
A Pakistan International Airlines' special flight, PK-9764, flew back 140 Pakistanis to Faisalabad from Jeddah.
In the second special flight, PK-9736, another 140 people were flown to Peshawar.
Since May 1, over 3,500 Pakistanis have been flown back to the country from Jeddah, through 18 special flights.
Flights are also being operated from Riyadh.
3:15pm: Raza Rabbani, Ghulam Ahmed Bilour call on Shehbaz Sharif
Former chairman Senate and senior leader of the Pakistan Peoples Party Senator Raza Rabbani and Awami National Party stalwart Ghulam Ahmed Bilour called on PML-N president Shehbaz Sharif to inquire after his health.
Former federal minister Saleem Saifullah Khan also inquired after the Opposition leader's health.
Shehbaz Sharif had tested positive for Covid-19 on June 11, and has since been quarantining at his Model Town residence.
2:40pm: Sindh reports 2,287 new cases
Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah reported 2,287 new cases, taking the provincial tally to 53,805.
The chief minister said 15 more persons succumbed to the virus, and Sindh's death toll has reached 831.
He said 80 patients are currently on ventilators and 1,219 patients have recovered today. The total number of recovered patients in Sindh has reached 25,606.
2:10pm: Murtaza Wahab asks citizens to be kind to medical staff conducting Covid-19 tests
Adviser to Sindh chief minister Murtaza Wahab asked citizens to be kind to the brave paramedical staff that is coming to people's homes to conduct Covid-19 tests.
These are very difficult times. Please be kind & good to the brave paramedical staff which comes to ur home for conducting #COVID19 tests.
— SenatorMurtaza Wahab (@murtazawahab1) June 14, 2020
1:55pm: 'Pakistan to formulate a future line of action against Covid-19,' says Qureshi
Presiding over a meeting regarding the use of modern technology, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said the novel coronavirus has changed the world.
He said meetings all across the globe are being held via video links.
The foreign minister maintained that Pakistan will have to formulate a future line of action, keeping in mind the negative impact of Covid-19.
1:45pm: Dr Sania Nishtar says PM visited Ehsaas Emergency Cash payment site
Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Poverty Alleviation Dr Sania Nishtar said the premier visited the Ehsaas Emergency Cash payment site in Lahore on Saturday and reviewed cash transfer operations.
PM @ImranKhanPTI visited #EhsaasEmergencyCash payment site stationed at #Lahore yesterday offering praise & support. He reviewed @Ehsaas_PK cash transfer operations & inquired about livelihoods of beneficiaries in aftermath of #COVID19. @UsmanAKBuzdar, CM Punjab was also present. pic.twitter.com/N4V7tbHEYK
— Sania Nishtar (@SaniaNishtar) June 14, 2020
1:30pm: Covid-19 testing for K-P Assembly members begins
Covid-19 testing for K-P Assembly members has started before the budget session begins.
Members who test negative for the virus will be allowed to attend the session.
1:10pm: K-P Assembly members Babar Saleem, Laiq Muhammad test positive for Covid-19
K-P Assembly members Babar Saleem Swati and Laiq Muhammad Khan have also contracted the virus.
12:40pm: K-P Assembly member Dr Sumaira Shams contracts virus
Khyber-Pakthunkhwa (K-P) Assembly member Dr Sumaira Shams has tested positive for Covid-19.
12:05pm: Punjab reports 2,514 new cases
Punjab health authorities reported 2,514 new cases, raising the provincial tally to 52,601.
31 more persons succumbed to the virus and the province's death toll stands at 969.
11:15am: K-P Healthcare Commission orders private hospitals to publish cost of treatments on official websites
The Khyber-Pakthunkhwa (K-P) Healthcare Commission has ordered all private hospitals in the province to publish the cost of treatment of Covid-19 patients on their official websites.
The notification said the pandemic has been declared an emergency by the K-P government and all hospitals must post the cost of treatment on its notice board within the hospital and on its official website.
11:10am: Punjab Forensic Science Agency temporarily closes Evidence Receiving Unit
In the wake of the novel coronavirus and the increasing number of cases, the Punjab Forensic Science Agency has closed the Evidence Receiving Unit for 14 days.
The agency informed Punjab Police to stop sending any DNA samples from June 16 to June 30.
10:40am: Challan tickets issued to 21,491 vehicles for violating SOPs in Lahore
Chief Traffic Officer (CTO) Lahore Hammad Abid said challan tickets were issued to 21,491 vehicles for violating SOPs issued by the government.
Strict action was taken against 17,000 motorcycles, 2,139 cars and 2,308 public transport.
29,569 motorcycles and 7,196 cars were given warnings for violating government protocol.
1o:00am: 494 cases registered for violating SOPs in Lahore
Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) Lahore Zulfiqar Hameed has instructed all divisional officers to ensure lockdown is implemented across the city.
He said strict guidelines must be followed and action will be taken against those who violate government orders.
In the last eight days, 494 cases were registered against persons violating standard operating procedures (SOPs) issued by the government.
Police searched 21,806 shops in Lahore and 1,664 shops were sealed for violating government protocol.
10,970 shopkeepers were given warnings.
9:20am: Sheikh Rashid says he is feeling better, urges public to stay home
Federal Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid said he is currently undergoing treatment at the Combined Military Hospital (CMH) Rawalpindi, adding that the medical team is working hard to ensure his speedy recovery.
The minister said he is feeling better and urged the public to stay home and take precautionary measures.
Sheikh Rashid was shifted to CMH on Saturday night, days after he tested positive for Covid-19.
8:45am: Rawalpindi coronavirus tally stands at 3,232
Rawalpindi Commissioner Muhammad Mehmood reported 3,232 cases in the city.
He said the death toll stands at 120, while at least 1,945 patients have recovered from the deadly disease.
The commissioner said there are a total of 54 quarantine centres with over 5,445 beds, adding that 4,311 persons are currently quarantined in these centres.
8:10am: Nationwide tally stands at 139,230
The National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) reported 3,287 new cases, taking the nationwide tally to 139,230.
In the past 24 hours, Pakistan reported 81 new deaths, raising the country's death toll to 2,632, while at least 51,735 patients have recovered from the contagion.
29,546 tests were carried out in the last 24 hours.
7:30am: Murtaza Wahab clarifies fake notification of blackout in parts of Karachi
Adviser to Sindh chief minister Murtaza Wahab shared a picture of a notification that has been circulating on social media and clarified that it is fake.
The notification stated there will be a blackout from 9am to 5pm for fifteen days in different parts of Karachi.
The Sindh government spokesperson clarified that this notification has not been issued and nor has this been under discussion.
This document which is doing the rounds on the social media is absolutely FAKE. Neither has this document been issued nor any such thing is under discussion. Thank you pic.twitter.com/4u9LV0LiLR
— SenatorMurtaza Wahab (@murtazawahab1) June 13, 2020
7:00am: FM Qureshi urges international institutions to invest in fragile healthcare systems of developing countries
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi urged international financial institutions to invest in the fragile healthcare system of developing countries.
He said Pakistan's economic country has become challenging after Covid-19, adding that the pandemic has had a devastating impact on the global economy.
The foreign minister said despite the current economic situation, the government managed a very balanced budget.