ISLAMABAD: Eleven courts working under the District and Sessions Court have been closed after judges and staff tested positive for Covid-19.
Islamabad Bar Association Secretary Nabil Tahir Mirza told Dawn that there are 70 courts working under the District and Sessions Court of which 11 have been sealed after 12 judges and staff were diagnosed with the disease.
The sealed courts are three courts of additional and sessions judge, the court of a senior civil judge and seven courts of civil judges, he said.
Mr Mirza said a few lawyers have also tested positive for Covid-19.
A notice issued by the bar association on Thursday said the situation has become dangerous because of violations of standard operating procedure (SOP), even though all members were repeatedly advised to follow these rules.
It said that 11 judges and court staffers have contracted the disease as a result, and the courts will be closed for 14 days.
More cases, deaths reported in twin cities
The association has urged lawyers to wear masks and follow SOP to limit the spread of Covid-19.
Teams from the capital administration also checked SOP violations in the capital. They found dozens of people out on the roads and in markets without masks, administration officials said, and they were fined Rs4,500.
In addition, seven shops were sealed out of 171 inspected. Other violators were fined Rs22,000.
A dozen mosques, 13 wedding halls and 31 restaurants were also inspected, they said. Some of the restaurants were fined Rs7,000 for SOP violations.
Islamabad reported 154 more cases of Covid-19 on Thursday as well as one death. There were 4,810 tests carried out in the last 24 hours.
The capital has now reported 215 deaths and 19,454 cases of Covid-19; there are currently 1,480 active cases.
There were 19 cases reported in I-8, followed by 10 in Bahria Town, eight each in I-10, G-7 and G-10, seven in PWD, six in Tarlai, five each in Jhangi Syedan, G-8 and B-17, four each in Model Town, Ghouri Town and G-9, three each in Sohan, Soan Garden, Koral, I-9, G-6, G-11, F-8, F-6 and Bhara Kahu, two each in Shah Allah Ditta, Pims Colony, National Police Foundation, Media Town, Khanna, G-13, F-11, E-9, E-7, E-11, DHA II and Bahria Enclave, and one each in River Garden, Rawat, Pakistan Town, Jinnah Town, G-5, Farash Town, F-5, F-17, F-10 and D-12.
Three people died of Covid-19 and 52 tested positive for the disease on Thursday, while 24 patients recovered.
A 44-year-old woman who lived in Faisal Colony, Chaklala, was brought to Quaid-i-Azam International Hospital on Oct 28 and died Thursday morning.
A 71-year-old man who lived in Nar Kahuta was brought to Holy Family Hospital (HFH) on Oct 28 with difficulty breathing and died on Thursday.
A 73-year-old man who lived in Satellite Town was brought to Quaid-i-Azam International Hospital on Oct 28 and died on Thursday.
Rawalpindi has reported 7,602 confirmed cases of Covid-19 so far, with 318 deaths and 7,043 recoveries.
There are 471 people still waiting for the results of their Covid-19 tests.
A total 29 confirmed patients have been admitted to HFH, of which six are from outside the district, while 212 confirmed patients are isolated at home and are being visited by health authority officials in selected areas.
Local administrations have kept 687 people in quarantine.
Commissioner retired Capt Mohammad Mehmood said that 9,065 people have been diagnosed with Covid-19 since March – 7,602 in Rawalpindi, 653 in Attock, 512 in Jhelum and 298 in Chakwal.
A total 387 people have died – 318 in Rawalpindi, 39 in Chakwal, 21 in Attock and nine in Jhelum – and 8,408 have recovered – 7,043 in Rawalpindi, 619 in Attock, 493 in Jhelum and 253 in Chakwal.
Mr Mehmood said SOP to limit the spread of Covid-19 will be implemented.
The district administration has been asked to enforce the decision of the National Command and Operation Centre, and all markets will be closed by 10pm. He said people will be asked to wear masks when in public.
Mr Mehmood added that teams will be formed to check SOP violations in markets, offices and public places. An awareness campaign has also been launched to emphasise the need for social distancing.
Published in Dawn, October 30th, 2020