Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that he had asked the Pakistan Army to assist the police and law enforcement agencies in enforcing SOPs for curbing the spread of the coronavirus, warning that Pakistan may soon be facing a situation similar to India if the current trend continues.
Addressing the nation after a meeting of the National Coordination Committee, he said: “I am appealing to you to follow SOPs so that we don’t have to take steps that India is taking which means imposing lockdowns. Half the problem is solved when you wear face masks.”
New SOPs announced by the NCOC:
• Schools in districts with over 5 per cent positivity rate closed till Eid
• Markets to be closed at 6 p.m.
• Indoor and outdoor dining banned till Eid; only takeaway and delivery to be allowed
• Office timings limited to 2 pm
• 50 per cent of staff to be allowed in offices
“If our circumstances become the same as India, then we will have to close down cities. We can’t do that because, as experience has shown, the poor suffer the most when lockdowns are imposed,” he further warned.
Pakistan on Saturday reported 157 deaths due to COVID-19, making it the country's highest single-day death toll since the coronavirus pandemic began last year.