KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah on Wednesday said that strict lockdown will continue across the province for another two weeks in order to control the spread of coronavirus cases, ARY News reported.
Addressing a press conference along with other provincial ministers in Karachi, CM Murad said that the restrictions during the lockdown, which has been extended for the next two weeks, will be tougher than before.
“Strict action will be taken against all those sectors who will not follow the standard operating procedures (SOPs) laid out by the government,” warned CM Murad.
Tailors, mechanics, barbers and auto part repair shops will remain closed until April 30, he said, adding that ban on pillion ridding will remain in place.
Sindh’s death rate increased to 2.4pc
Murad Ali Shah said that the death rate from coronavirus has increased from 2.1 per cent to 2.4 per cent.
He refuted the impression that Pakistan has less number of cases in comparison to the rest of the world, saying that 10 per cent of the total tests conducted turn up positive.
Speaking about the new cases in the country, Shah said the province has recorded 166 new cases in the last 24 hours and six more deaths to take the provincial tally of fatalities to 41.
Murad said that there are 41 critical coronavirus patients in Sindh in different hospitals of Sindh.
Commenting over the decision to reopen the construction industry, Murad said the Sindh government will not allow construction sites to resume activities “unless they follow SOPs”.
Protecting older people from Coronavirus
CM Murad Ali Shah said that people over 60, and especially over 80, are particularly vulnerable to severe or fatal infection from the novel coronavirus.
He urged people, who have been allowed to go out for work, to disinfect themselves thoroughly when they return home.
CM Murad also congratulated Prime Minister Imran Khan for bringing businessmen and industrialists on the same page over following standard operating procedures (SOPs).
Shah said that he will meet with religious leaders today to reach an agreement over holding congregation prayers in mosques.
Murad defends decision to seal 11 Karachi UCs
While defending the provincial government’s decision to seal 11 Union Councils in Karachi over coronavirus fears, the Sindh chief minister said that the following UCs had been sealed following the rise in COVID-19 cases from these areas.
“Overall 234 cases had been reported from the 11 UCs of Karachi. We [Sindh government] decided to seal these Union Councils to stop the further spread of coronavirus cases,” Shah added.