Partial lockdown continues across Pakistan amid coronavirus outbreak

LAHORE:    Pakistan on Tuesday has continued to observe partial lockdown to counter the coronavirus pandemic as unnecessary movement outside remains halted across the country.
Pakistan Army, Rangers, police and other security officials have been deployed across Pakistan and cases are being lodged against those who are violating the lockdown.
Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah stressed that the global epidemic can be defeated by working together as the province observes fourth day of the lockdown today.
The restrictions in Sindh have been tightened further as shops have been allowed to remain open from 08:00 AM to 08:00 PM only. Medical stores have been given exemption from the new restriction while shopping plazas and big markets in Karachi are closed.
Shopping malls, recreational places, private and government offices remain closed in Punjab. Only grocery stores, vegetable markets and milk shops are open in the province amidst deployment of heavy contingents of the police and Pakistan Army.
Partial lockdown in the federal capital is being observed as well as all markets, restaurants and transport are shut down.
Inter and intra city movement has been halted whereas social, religious and other gatherings are banned. All small and big markets are closed along with public transport and metro bus service.
According to the Punjab Home Department notification, security agencies, health department employees and journalists have been given exemption from the lockdown.
Call centers are allowed to work with fifty percent workers and without any public dealing. Only those government employees are permitted to go outside who possess valid permits.
One person from a family is allowed to visit the market to buy essentials and two persons to buy medicine and grocery. Two individuals are allowed to remain with patient in case of emergency while two persons including a driver are permitted to move outside with disabled people.
People are allowed to perform religious rituals such as funeral prayers and burial of the deceased. Welfare organizations like Edhi, Saylani and those who provide free meals remain functional.
Banks have been allowed to operate with limited staff, however, their timings have been reduced from 10:00 AM to 04:30 PM. If any bank employee is tested positive for coronavirus, the branch will be shut down but ATM and online services will not be halted. All bank employees are directed to keep their CNIC and employment card with them.
Balochistan will remain under lockdown till April 7 and the provincial government has barred unnecessary movement.
Markets and public transport in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa are also shut as people have been directed by the government to isolate themselves at homes.
Pakistan Army has been deployed across the country after the lockdown. The interior ministry said in its notification that the civil administration had requested for the army’s help.
Contingents of Pakistan Army are performing duties in Punjab, Sindh, Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Kashmir.

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