- Sindh has announced it will go into lockdown at midnight today
- PM has urged people to self-quarantine to fight the pandemic
- Sindh, Baluchistan, and Punjab have also requested army deployment
- Number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Pakistan has risen to 757
- So far, 4 deaths have been reported in Pakistan: 1 in Sindh and 3 in KP
- Tally of reported infections in Islamabad has also climbed to 10
- Sindh has been affected the most with 333 confirmed cases so far
- Punjab has reported 222 cases, Baluchistan 104, KP 31, and AJK/GB 56
CM Sindh Murad Ali Shah has announced that the province will go into complete lockdown at midnight for 15 days with movement restricted to need-basis only.
All offices will be closed and gatherings suspended under the lockdown. Nobody will be allowed to go out in public unless necessary. People coming out of the houses must carry their CNICs. Sick people will be allowed to visit the hospital and only two people will be allowed in one car. Essential services including food supplies, however, will continue during the lockdown.
Earlier today, the Sindh govt. wrote to the interior ministry seeking deployment of the army in the province to help it control the pandemic. Balochistan and Punjab have also joined Sindh in requesting for the army deployment to curtail the COVID-19 spread and maintain the law-and-order situation.
The government and health experts are repeatedly asking the public to show responsibility and stay indoors in an earnest call to curb the contagion. The numbers of COVID-19 cases are to see a further surge in days to come as at least 2,000 more people are expected in Baluchistan from Iran through the Taftan border in a few days.
Here are the latest updates.
70 New Cases Reported in Punjab
Punjab sees jump to coronavirus tally by 70 new cases, taking the province’s total to 222.
Of the new cases, 153 are from zaireen, 36 from Lahore, 1 from Multan, 2 from Rawalpindi, 3 from Gujrat, 3 from Jhelum, and 4 from Gujranwala.
Sindh Creates New Twitter Account for Coronavirus Lockdown Update
The Sindh govt. spokesperson Murtaza Wahab has announced creation of a separate Twitter account ‘from where administrative orders regarding lockdown will be shared’.
The only official Government of Sindh account from where administrative orders regarding lockdown will be shared. Please follow for updates. https://t.co/jvfu2G9QIe
— SenatorMurtaza Wahab (@murtazawahab1) March 22, 2020
Punjab Establishes Crisis Management Cell for Coronavirus
Punjab has announced establishment of a crisis management cell that would monitor the efforts being made to curb the COVID-19 contagion.
The cell will gather all coronavirus related data including confirmed cases, suspected cases, quarantined cases, and pilgrims returning from Iran on a daily basis.
41 New Cases Emerge in Sindh
Sindh has reported addition of 44 new coronavirus cases, taking the provincial tally to 33.
Sindh health department spokesperson Meeran Yousuf shared the new numbers adding that out of the 123 cases reported in Karachi, 77 were of local transmission.
2 Islamabad Mosques Sealed after Ijtema Participant Tests Positive
After a foreigner – who was a part of the Tableeghi Jamaat – tested positive for COVID-19, 2 Islamabad mosques have been ordered shut after being disinfected.
Disinfecting the mosque. Terrible lapse and criminal carelessness on part of the Khateeb and Tableeghi jamat. They knew that one of them had symptoms and they kept on roaming around https://t.co/LhaCyCsFYF pic.twitter.com/uWOPKNYrsk
— Deputy Commissioner Islamabad (@dcislamabad) March 22, 2020
Lockdowns Not Enough to Defeat Coronavirus: WHO
Countries can’t simply lock down their societies to defeat coronavirus, the World Health Organization’s top emergency expert said on Sunday, adding that public health measures are needed to avoid a resurgence of the virus later on.
“What we really need to focus on is finding those who are sick, those who have the virus, and isolate them, find their contacts and isolate them,” Mike Ryan said in an interview with the BBC.
Sindh Imposes Curfew for the Next 15 Days
Here’s what it will mean for the citizens:
- All offices will be closed and gatherings suspended
- Unless required, people will not be allowed to go out in public
- If anyone steps out they should carry their CNIC
- If someone is sick they will be able to visit the hospital
- One driver and one passenger will be allowed in a car
- Essential services including food supplies will continue
- Only three people will be allowed in a car when going to the hospital
PM Imran Khan Addresses Nation
PM Imran Khan has addressed the nation over coronavirus pandemic. Below are some of the highlights of his speech:
- A complete lockdown means imposing a curfew and locking people in their homes
- Pakistan’s conditions were the same was as other countries like Italy, he would have imposed a lockdown
- Pakistan currently doesn’t have the capacity to provide the entire nation with food at home if a lockdown is imposed in the country
- People should take themselves towards a lockdown; they should self-quarantine
- It’s people’s responsibility to take the precautions
- Panic is far more dangerous than the coronavirus
Murad Ali Shah Announces Sindh Lockdown
CM Sindh Murad Ali Shah has said that Sindh will go under lockdown starting midnight.
COVIDー19 Has No Treatment, Isolation & Precaution the Only Ways Out: Murtaza Wahab
Sindh govt. spokesperson Murtaza Wahab has said that since there is no treatment for the novel coronavirus, isolation and precaution are the only ways out.
These are testing times. We as a nation have always stood by each other in tough times, faced adversities & come out of it. #COVIDー19 has no treatment, isolation & precaution is the only way out. Support our decision for your own & your loved ones safety & well being. Thank you
— SenatorMurtaza Wahab (@murtazawahab1) March 22, 2020
JI Chief Wants Landlords to Waive Two Months’ Rent
JI chief Sirajul Haq has asked the landlords to waive off rents of their tenants for the next two months as cities face partial lockdowns.
He also asked the government to not collect utility bill payments from people who earn less than 25,000 per month.
CM Sindh Directs Utility Companies to Not Collect March Bills
CM Sindh Murad Ali Shah has directed KE, KESCO, SEPCO, and SSGC to not collect the payments for March bills that are less than Rs 5,000.
He added that the companies can collect this amount later in easy installment. He added that no power or gas connections will be cut in the next two months.
PM Imran Khan to Address Nation on Coronavirus
PM Imran Khan will be addressing the nation today over the challenge posed by the coronavirus pandemic.
Firdous Ashiq Awan, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting, shared the news in a tweet.
— Dr. Firdous Ashiq Awan (@Dr_FirdousPTI) March 22, 2020
READ: Currency Notes Can Spread Coronavirus, Here’s What You Can Do to Avoid It
Amid this outbreak of Coronavirus, nations are putting their best foot forward and taking unprecedented measures to curtail the situation at hand.
Washing and sanitizing hands regularly is considered to be one of the best bets in the fight against coronavirus. However, there’s still the possibility of contracting the virus through objects that we touch daily such as currency notes.
Read the full story here.
Sindh, Balochistan, and Punjab Seek Army Deployment
Earlier today, the Sindh govt. wrote to the interior ministry seeking deployment of the army in the province to help it control the pandemic.
Balochistan and Punjab have joined Sindh in requesting for the army deployment to curtail the COVID-19 spread and maintain the law-and-order situation.
CM Sindh Murad Ali Shah Hints at Sindh’s Lockdown
CM Sindh Murad Ali Shah has informed that the provincial government is mulling a province-wide lockdown to contain the spread of coronavirus.
He added that the government would take every decision to protect people’s lives and will announce an ‘important decision’ in the evening which will be in ‘people’s favor’.
4th Coronavirus Death Reported in Pakistan
The coronavirus death toll in Pakistan has reached 4 with a new death reported in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
The announcement was made by Ajmal Wazir, the Adviser to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister on Information.
“A woman who came from Taftan, who later died while being shifted to Dera Ismail Khan, her results are back and her samples have also tested positive for coronavirus. Therefore, three deaths have been reported from the virus in KP,” he infirmed.
14-hour ‘Janta Curfew’ Begins in India
Millions of people across India are staying indoors, streets wearing a deserted look and a bare number of vehicles are on the road on Sunday in an unprecedented shutdown on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s appeal for a ‘ Janata curfew’ to help check the spread of coronavirus.
The Janta Curfew is voluntary and in place for 14 hours, starting 7 am. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had asked people during his address to the nation on Thursday that it will help in the fight against Covid-19.
Every Pakistani Must Fight This War: Arif Alvi
In his recent tweet, President Arif Alvi reminds people of simple precautions of social distancing, handwashing, and not touching the face to control the pandemic.
“Every Pakistani must fight this war & enlist every friend, relative, neighbor as a soldier,” he added.
As another day in this war dawns upon us, we must remind the people repeatedly about simple precautions of social distancing, washing of hands & not to touch your face. Every Pakistani must fight this war & enlist every friend, relative, neighbor as a soldier. We will win انشاللہ
— The President of Pakistan (@PresOfPakistan) March 22, 2020
May, June Cambridge Exams Canceled in Pakistan
In a recent statement, Cambridge International has announced the cancellation of all examinations in the country scheduled to be held in May and June this year.
“We are so very sorry that these exams have had to be cancelled. We can only sympathise with all the students and their teachers in Pakistan who have been working so hard towards this goal. We know what a huge disappointment this must be, and can assure you that we are working hard to offer as much support as we can in these challenging times,” said Amir Ramzan, Country Director Pakistan, British Council.
Federal Govt. Offers $10 Million to Sindh Administration
The center has offered the Sindh govt. $10 million to help fight the coronavirus pandemic.
The announcement was made by Governor Sindh Imran Ismail who said that the federal government was fully aware of the challenge that Sindh was facing.
Sindh Govt. Seeks Army Deployment
The Sindh govt. has written to the interior ministry seeking deployment of the army in the province to help it control the pandemic.
“In the wake of prevailing situation of increasing number of COVID-19 cases in the province, the Province of Sindh requires the services of the Armed Forces in aid of civil power under Article 245 of Constitution read with Section 131 (a) of Criminal Procedure Code,” read the letter.
For our coronavirus coverage from March 21, click here.