Easing lockdown

Easing lockdown: Store launch, suggested domestic flights

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Punjab, Sindh and Balochistan resisted the reopening of educational facilities after June 1 at an inter-provincial conference of ministers for education on Wednesday. Minister of Federal Education Shafqat Mahmood chaired the meeting at which provinces requested that the educational institutions be kept locked.

The National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) must make a final decision in this regard, as the meeting did not find agreement in this regard, claim media sources. Meanwhile, Wednesday’s Regional Command and Control Center offered to ease the lockout after May 9.

Federal Minister of Planning and Development Asad Umar chaired the NCOC meeting in which the chief ministers of four provinces and leaders of the governments of Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan also participated.

The NCOC has also recommended that transportation services be restored throughout the region. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran Khan is meeting tomorrow (Thursday) with the National Coordination Committee (NCC) summoned to deliberate through the NCOC proposals. On Tuesday, following May 9, the federal cabinet accepted a plan to lighten the countrywide constraints.

Federal Communication and Broadcasting Minister Shibli Faraz said this when briefing the media on the decisions taken during PM Imran’s presided conference. Yet again, the Prime Minister emphasized the need to take control of disadvantaged parts of society, and those who were made unemployed in the aftermath of lockdown, Faraz added. Faraz said Imran backed the plan to lighten the constraints on lockdowns, bearing in mind the difficulties people experience.

However, he warned of an abrupt spike in infections if the standard operating procedures (SOPs) were not strictly implemented after lockdown was eased. Asad Umar also briefed the ministers on the country’s coronavirus condition, and told the cabinet members that the condition in Pakistan was much better than other developing countries in terms of COVID-19 infections and deaths.
The NCOC has signed up too many measures to relax the lockout constraints imposed to prevent coronavirus transmission.

The initiatives include opening inter-provincial transportation in compliance with the defined Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and limited operationalization of Outdoor Patient Departments (OPDs) in the federal capital. The recommendations included steps to strike a compromise between curbing coronavirus activities and reviving economic growth. This would stay in force until 31 May, if accepted at a meeting on Thursday.