The Federal Minister for Planning and Development, Asad Umar, has announced that educational institutions will reopen on 11 January only if the COVID-19 situation improves in the country.
He stated this while briefing the media after chairing the National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) meeting on Tuesday.
Umar said the coordination committee has endorsed all the recommendations and decisions made by the Inter-Provincial Education Ministers Conference (IPEMC) on Monday pertaining to the closure of schools and winter vacations.
He also said that a homework method will be devised for students so that the studying process continues uninterrupted.
“The provinces will determine the details in this regard. Each province will decide according to its circumstances and resources. All the details will be sent to the provinces soon,” he added.
The minister informed the media that the government has also indefinitely closed indoor restaurants while outdoor dining will be allowed only until 10 pm.
Asad Umar, who also leads the government’s response to COVID-19, remarked that the second wave of the coronavirus has been devastating so far, and has called on the masses to follow the standard operating procedures (SOPs) in public places.
The minister warned that the COVID situation in Pakistan will deteriorate to the June 2020 level within two weeks if preventive measures are not taken. He added that currently, more than 1,750 patients in Pakistan need oxygen and are admitted to various hospitals.
In June, between 3,300 and 3,500 people had been hospitalized and needed artificial ventilation.
Meanwhile, the number of coronavirus infections has been increasing every day. Pakistan recorded more than 3,000 cases during the last twenty-four hours for the first time since July. The country has also reported 59 deaths, the highest since the pandemic was at a peak in July-August.