NCOC to review school opening decision after sudden surge in Covid cases
ISLAMABAD: The National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) meeting held on Monday under the supervision of Federal Minister for Planning, Development Asad Umar mulled over deferring the opening up of cinemas, indoor weddings and dining in the restaurants amid rising coronavirus cases.
The forum also decided to revisit school opening modalities in the prevailing rising trend of positivity in its next session to be held in the first week of April. Cinemas, indoor weddings and dining in the restaurants were allowed by the government from March 15.
According to a state-owned news agency, the NCOC reviewed the rising positivity trend prevailing across the country and expressed its concerns over public complacency in following non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs or alternate measures to treat the disease other than medical treatment).
The NCOC meeting chaired by Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar flanked by National Coordinator Lieutenant General Hamood Uz Zaman Khan discussed Covid-19 rising positivity trend and corresponding actions, vaccination progress and national vaccine strategy where the provincial representatives participated the meeting through video link.
Keeping in view the downward trend in coronavirus infections, the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on Feb 24. had announced to lift some Covid-19 restrictions that were put in place owing to the second coronavirus wave.
Following were some of the decisions taken by the NCOC:
- Condition of 50% work from home removed for office employees
- Indoor wedding ceremonies will be allowed from March 15, 2021, with stringent COVID-19 standard operating procedures (SOPs)
- Indoor dining allowed from March 15
- Opening of cinemas and shrines allowed from March 15
- Time-limit lifted from commercial activities and amusement parks
- Wearing of face masks, social distancing, smart lockdowns will continue
- Local bodies and cantonment board elections can be conducted by Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) by the end of May or early June 2021.
Pakistan Covid cases
As many as 1,592 new cases of the novel coronavirus surfaced across the country over the past 24 hours, pushing the national tally of infections to 592,100.
According to the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC), 22 more people succumbed to the deadly disease during this period, taking the death toll to 13,227.
A total of 34,347 samples were tested, out of which 1,592 turned out to be positive. The positivity rate of new infections was recorded at 4.63 per cent.