GILGIT: Gilgit-Baltistan Chief Minister Khalid Khurshid Khan has said that Delta virus, which is an Indian variant of coronavirus, is spreading in the region.
Speaking at a press conference in Gilgit on Friday, he along with information minister Fatahullah Khan and law minister Syed Sohail Abbas said the positivity rate in GB was 8.5 per cent.
Mr Khurshid Khan said his government was closely following the Covid-19 situation in the region. However, he said no lockdown would be imposed in any part of the region.
“All activities, including tourism, will continue with strict observance of the related standard operating procedures,” he added.
The chief minister said the region’s economy could not afford another lockdown.
He said currently 845 coronavirus active cases existed in the region, adding 122 people had so far died of the pandemic.
Mr Khurshid said GB had currently 75 oxygen cylinders and 212 beds for coronavirus patients, adding the capacity would be increased if need arose.
He said 10,000 people were being vaccinated daily, claiming the whole GB population would be inoculated till September this year.
He appealed to the people to strictly follow the Covid-19-related SOPs.
The chief minister said tourists were allowed to visit the region with Covid-19 test and vaccination certificates.
Meanwhile, the chief minister through a letter has asked federal communication minister Murad Saeed to realign the Tatta Pani section of the Karakoram Highway at least five kilometres downstream the right bank of the Indus River in order to facilitate flow of tourists and CPEC-related trade.
The CM said the Tatta Pani section in Diamer was highly prone to mudslides and got blocked as soon as the lightest rain fell.
Published in Dawn, July 24th, 2021