PESHAWAR: The district administration imposed smart lockdown in nine areas of Peshawar as positivity for Covid-19 swabs swelled to 11 per cent in the capital city of the province.
A notification issued by Deputy Commissioner Mohammad Ali Asghar on the recommendation of health department prohibited entry and exist of people except those dealing in essential items from 6pm on Thursday to the areas till further order.
A health department report said that eight people died of Covid-19 during the last 24 hours including three in Peshawar, two in Kohat and one each in Swabi, Abbottabad and Bannu. The province also reported 384 new cases including 174 from Peshawar. So far, 1,585 persons have fallen prey to the virus while 56,544 patients have recorded from the infectious ailment.
Peshawar recorded 776 deaths and 22,131 coronavirus cases, prompting the district administration to enforce smart lockdown now and then.
The new localities where restrictions have been imposed include Mohallah Meher Khandan, Jahangir Pura, Street No 4 and 5, Rahatabad, Pakni Road, Khyber Housing Society, Achini Chowk, Pishtakhara Bala, Kandy Payyan, Street No 7-13 in Defence Officer Colony, Khyber Road, Street No2 in Sector K-1V, Phase-III of Hayatabad, Mohallah Rami Zai, Sufaid Dheri, District Colony, Yousafabad, Dalazak Road, Sayed Ahmad Colony, Peshawar Cantonment and Street No11 in Sector C-IV, Phase-V of Hayatabad.
The notification said that there would be no general entry or exit to those localities by any person, except the people supplying essential commodities to the areas. All types of gatherings have been strictly prohibited.
Positivity rate of Covid-19 continues to surge
All shops other than those of essential services pharmacies including general stores, food supplies, drinking water supplies and emergency etc will remain closed in the areas.
Congregation in the mosques in the areas will be restricted to five persons only. The deputy commissioners said that violators of the restrictions would face strict action.
Officials told Dawn that the provincial capital was one of the hardest-hit districts in the first phase of the Covid-19 and it continued to recorded bulk of cases and mortalities in the second phase started from November 1. In the second phase, 80 per cent of the deaths and incidence have been recorded in Peshawar where case fatality rate (CFR) is 3.5 per cent up from 2.8 per cent in the province. A total of 585 patients have been hospitalised in the province and more than 400 of them are in Peshawar.
Abbottabad has 7.8 per cent positivity ratio and 4.4 per cent CFR. The national CFR is 2.08 per cent. Officials said that Abbottabad, Kohat, Mansehra and Nowshera were also recording cases and smart lockdowns were imposed there to prevent transmission of the virus.
They said that smart lockdown was being imposed in those streets where cases were reported to prevent spread of the virus as well as allow people in other areas to continue their routine work.
The officials said that World Health Organisation recommended complete lockdown for 15 days in entire city on emergence of cases but government was pursuing the policy of smart lockdown to facilitate people in doing their jobs and at the same time stem transmission of the virus.
Experts, however, said that the district administration must focus on the markets, wedding halls and mosques, which were a big source of virus transmission.
Published in Dawn, December 25th, 2020