NCOC increases number of flights to bring back Pakistanis

Published July 14, 2021
NCOC on Tuesday decided to increase the number of flights by 30 per cent to bring back on a daily basis around 3,000 Pakistanis stranded in different countries.   — AFP/File
NCOC on Tuesday decided to increase the number of flights by 30 per cent to bring back on a daily basis around 3,000 Pakistanis stranded in different countries. — AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: While the country has administered over 20 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine, the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on Tuesday decided to increase the number of flights by 30 per cent to bring back on a daily basis around 3,000 Pakistanis stranded in different countries.

According to a statement issued by the NCOC, over 20m doses of vaccine have been administered since February this year across the country. Over 4m doses have been administered during the current month, with more than 500,000 doses administered in a single day over the past few days.

Minister for Planning and Development Asad Umar shared the success story on social media. “For the first time we crossed half a million doses of vaccination yesterday. 5 lakh 25 thousand doses were administered yesterday. Highest ever first dose was also achieved yesterday with 3 lakh 90 thousand first doses administered. The pace will increase further inshallah,” he tweeted.

Over 20 million doses administered since February; 21 deaths, 1,590 cases reported in single day

Since a large number of overseas Pakistanis have been stranded in different countries and they may not be able to celebrate Eidul Azha with their families, the NCOC decided to increase the international flight operation from 20pc to 50pc. “Decision will be implemented from July 15 and around 2,500 to 3,000 persons will be benefited daily. Advisory has been issued to all the airport managements and relevant departments,” it stated.

The NCOC also announced that from August 1 air travel would not be allowed for those who have not been inoculated. Moreover, there will be strict checking on the ways leading to tourist places and vaccination certificates will be checked and verified. It was also decided to get support of all departments, including the army, for implementation of the Covid-related standard operating procedures (SOPs).

A meeting of the NCOC was informed that a number of restaurants had been sealed in Islamabad, Multan, Peshawar and Gujranwala over violation of SOPs as people were sitting there without wearing masks and vaccination certificates.

According to the NCOC data, 21 deaths and 1,590 cases were reported in a single day. The number of active cases, which was around 31,000 last month, reached 39,644 as of July 13. As many as 2,447 patients were admitted to hospitals and 215 of them were on ventilators.

Published in Dawn, July 14th, 2021

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