ISLAMABAD: The country-wide lockdown to curb the coronavirus spread has been eased taking into account the situation in other nations around the world, as well as Pakistan’s economic and public woes, Prime Minister Imran Khan said Monday.

A meeting was held with PM Imran in the chair to review the implementation of directives to relax the country-wide lockdown. Federal ministers Asad Umar, Hammad Azhar, Shibli Faraz, and Khusro Bakhtiar, as well as advisers Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh and Abdul Razzak Dawood attended the meeting.

According to sources, the premier was briefed on the overall coronavirus-related situation in the country and statistics from the National Command and Operations Centre (NCOC). Special Assistant to Prime Minister on National Security Moeed Yusuf also apprised the PM about the repatriation of overseas Pakistanis.

Sources informed Geo News that the meeting also analysed the rate of virus spread in the country which has spiked in the last few days.

PM Imran said an integrated strategy should be formulated to make ventilators easily available and ensure their best use. The lockdown was relaxed keeping in view the economic situation and the challenges the people in Pakistan were facing, as well as the conditions in foreign nations, he added.

The government eased the countrywide lockdown in a phased manner to maintain a balance between economic activities and protective measures against COVID-19, the premier said. Countries around the world were realising that the lockdown to contain the pandemic was only a temporary effort, he noted, adding, however, that safety measures should not be ignored in any circumstances.

PM Imran also directed for concerns in various quarters over the coronavirus testing to be allayed, that the public be encouraged to get tested by themselves in case an individual experienced symptoms, and that people be informed about how to self-quarantine.

It is noteworthy here that positive cases of coronavirus in Pakistan have shot to more than 31,000, while almost 700 people have lost their lives to the deadly infection.


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