Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah. PHOTO: FILE

Sindh Covid restrictions to remain in place amid surge in cases

Murad says positivity ratio of 10.2 in province, 16.82 in Karachi worrying; meeting mulls more restrictions

Hafeez Tunio May 20, 2021

Sindh government decided on Thursday to maintain the current restrictions in the province amid a surge in the Covid-19 cases.

The decision was reached at a meeting of the coronavirus taskforce led my Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah.

Provincial ministers, chief secretary Sindh, IG police, additional chief secretary, commissioner, additional IG, Core V Rangers and representatives of the World Health Organization (WHO) attended the meeting.

Murad told the meeting that of the record 20,421 tests carried out on Wednesday, 9,000 were conducted in Karachi.

Out of the total tests, 2,076 samples tested positive for Covid, a positivity ratio of 10.2 per cent.

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"In Karachi, the ratio remained 16.82." Murad observed that there were 1,232 cases in the province on Eidul Fitr. The ratio rose afterwards."

"This shows that the cases are on the rise in Sindh, and we are finding it hard to ease the restrictions in the province," the chief minister maintained.

Members of the taskforce and experts advised the CM to maintain the current restrictions. "Take even tougher decisions if necessary," they said.

Murad asked the attendees of the meeting to advise further measures in view of the situation.

The taskforce also decided to convene another meeting on Saturday to review the situation and decide further steps.

Vaccination for travellers

The provincial government will also initiate vaccination for those citizens aged 18 years or above who are travelling abroad for either studies or have a valid work permit.

The decision has been made in view of the fact that some countries at present require vaccination prior to travel. Meanwhile, the provincial government has decided to keep the vaccination centre at Expo Centre open 24 hours a day to facilitate office goers and businessmen.

Besides the government officials, the government has directed the private doctors, paramedics, nurses and other health staffers to get vaccinated at the earliest.

Expressing concern on the “critical situation” in Karachi following a surge in Covid cases, provincial authorities asked commoners to get vaccinated and encourage others to do the same.

Earlier today, it was reported that the pandemic claimed 19 more lives in Sindh and caused 3,000 fresh infections.

Read more Sindh allows opening of bakeries, milk-shops till midnight

According to a statement issued from the Chief Minister's House, 2,076 new cases were diagnosed when 20,421 samples were tested for the contagion, indicating a detection rate of 10.2 per cent.

The provincial Covid death toll and tally rose to 4,854 and 303,306, respectively, with the recent cases, said CM Murad Ali Shah.

Another 611 patients also recovered from the infection bringing the number of recoveries in Sindh to 278,280, he added.

As of Wednesday, 20,172 persons were under treatment in Sindh for the coronavirus. Of these, 19,347 were in home isolation, 25 at isolation centres and 800 at different hospitals. He added that the condition of 764 patients was stated to be critical, including 53 shifted to ventilators.

Out of the 2,076 new cases, 1,260 were detected in Karachi. These included 629 from district East, 258 in South, 144 in Central, 109 in Malir, 95 in Korangi and 25 in district West.

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