ISLAMABAD: While number of active cases of Covid-19 decreased by 25 per cent, the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on Monday decided to continue ban on tourism till further orders.
According to data, there were 68,223 active cases as of May 17, which was around 25pc fewer as the number had surpassed the 90,000 mark by the end of last month.
During the last two waves of pandemic, the country hit the figure of 50,000 active cases and then the cases started decreasing. During the first wave, active cases surpassed the 50,000 mark in June 2020 but later they started decreasing and finally dropped to less than 6,000 by September. However, the numbers started increasing in October, due to which the NCOC declared it the second wave of the deadly virus, and by December the active cases surpassed the figure of 50,000. While active cases started dropping and reached around 16,000 in February, the NCOC declared a third wave when the cases began to surge again. Number of active cases surpassed the 50,000 mark for a third time on March 31 and the trend continued till the cases surpassed the figure of 90,000.
NCOC keeps ban on tourism intact; Covid claims 74 more lives
In the last week of April, the NCOC decided to seek help of the Pakistan Army to ensure implementation of standard operating procedures (SOPs). Later, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed issued a video statement, saying that Army would be deployed on the request of the provinces. The same day provinces and administrative units sought help of the armed forces for the implementation of SOPs. Because of the decision the implementation of SOPs improved. Moreover, a week-long lockdown was announced from May 8 due to which cases were reduced.
According to the NCOC data, 3,232 new cases and 74 deaths were reported in a single day. In all, 4,886 patients were under treatment in hospitals across the country, while a total of 584 ventilators were in use.
In order to control the spread of the coronavirus, the NCOC decided to continue ban on tourism till further orders.
“Ban on Tourism will continue till further notice. NCOC will issue necessary instructions accordingly. #StayHomeStaySafe,” says a tweet issued by the NCOC.
Meanwhile, according to reports run by electronic media a decision has been made to vaccinate 100pc population of Islamabad within two months.
However, a senior official of the Ministry of National Health Services dismissed the reports as untrue.
“No such plan as of now. Vaccine however will be widely available soon and we expect Islamabadis to be more health conscious,” he said.
Published in Dawn, May 18th, 2021