Sindh govt mulls schools closure, ban on public gatherings

By: News Desk      Published: 02:21 PM, 10 Mar, 2020
Sindh govt mulls schools closure, ban on public gatherings
File photo.

The Sindh government on Tuesday mulled a number of measures to contain the spread of coronavirus but again ruled out moving Pakistan Super League (PSL 5) games out of Karachi.

Sindh Information Minister Nasir Hussain Shah said that PSL matches scheduled in Karachi will continue as planned. He said that the provincial government was taking all necessary measures to curb the spread of coronavirus in Sindh province. “There is no change in the schedule of PSL Karachi matches. The situation is under control,” he said in a statement.

Later, Singh Governor Imran Ismael also said that all the PSL matches for Karachi will be played in the megacity as per schedule.

The government had earlier advised that people who recently came from Iran, China and feeling sick should avoid visiting National Stadium Karachi.

Meanwhile, it was decided to install screening machines at entrance gates of National Stadium, while medical teams will be performing duties along with police officials at all 12 entrance and exit gates of the stadium.

Among other measures, the Sindh government also directed the health department to establish its desk at the Jinnah International Airport in Karachi that will scan the incoming passengers for the novel coronavirus.

This and many proposals have been discussed during a meeting presided by Sindh chief minister, including the closure of educational institutions in the province for an indefinite period.

The proposals further suggest the prompt establishment of coronavirus information desks across the hospitals of the province, and will also issue SOPs to private hospitals regarding the coronavirus positive cases.

The proposals will also seek a ban on public gatherings, and a directive in this regard for a 14-day local quarantine is expected today.

An isolation ward with a capacity of 500 patients will be constructed in Sukkur. In addition to this, the Sindh government has decided to increase the isolation wards across the province.

The Sindh Health Department has also banned citizens from entering their offices. Only staff can be allowed entry, no citizens, the department added.

SHC directive

The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Tuesday stopped the daily attendance of all the officials through machines using fingerprints as a precautionary measure to stop the spread of coronavirus.

According to a notification, the orders are applied to the entire judiciary in the province.

It says the attendance would be recorded manually after facial recognition.

Earlier, similar directives were issued by the Lahore High Court (LHC) to tackle the coronavirus crisis.

It is worth noting that nine new coronavirus cases have been reported in Karachi during the last 24 hours, raising the total number of patients to 16 in the country.

Chaman border

Pakistan has also extended the closure of Pak-Afghan border at Chaman for next seven days amid coronavirus fears. A notification in this regard has been issued by the Frontier Corps Balochistan.

The decision has been taken to put in place additional necessary measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus on both sides of the border.

The border with Iran, which was closed for the last 16 days, has been partially opened today. It must be noted that trade activities partially resumed at the Pakistan-Iran border on Saturday.