Coronavirus cases are increasing in Pakistan by the day with the overall tally crossing 13,749 in the country. Leading media network, ARY’s office in Islamabad has been closed after 8 people have reported positive for the novel coronavirus.
20 tests were performed as a precautionary measure by the administration after 2 people showed symptoms of COVID-19.
CEO ARY, Salman Iqbal shared the news on Twitter, saying the office will now be sanitized and all the employees will be tested. The administration has also directed the employees to stay at home until further notice.
As a precautionary measure random testing was done in ARY Isb office ,8 reported positive out of 20 tests, 2 have shown symptoms.We have closed our isb office ,all staff will be tested and office to be sanitised.Till all staff is tested employees have been asked to stay at home.
— Salman Iqbal ARY (@Salman_ARY) April 27, 2020
Despite repeated advisories, a number of offices are still open, thus increasing the chances of the spread of coronavirus. ARY had previously claimed that it had moved most of its staff to work remotely and only the necessary staff was asked to come to offices, however, the recent news raises doubts over the network’s honesty on the matter.
Abbasi Shaheed Hospital’s Emergency Ward closed after CMO tested positive for coronavirus
Abbasi Shaheed Hospital is a prominent hospital equipped with modern medical machines. The emergency ward of the hospital is closed after chief medical officer (CMO) tested positive for the virus.
Dr Saleem Shaikh, additional police surgeon at the hospital added that the emergency department was sealed around 3 pm after the doctor’s report revealed that he was diagnosed with the virus.
In Sindh, the total number of infected medical workers stands at 56, according to the report; this includes 19 doctors, 15 nurses and 22 other healthcare providers. Of these, 41 are admitted to hospitals and 15 have been discharged.
According to the National Emergency Operation Centre, 253 healthcare providers and medical workers have been infected with the coronavirus in Pakistan so far.
Relaxing lockdown could bring more COVID-19 cases in Pakistan
Shortly after the prime minister’s announcement, a group of influential religious leaders announced that they would defy government orders banning congregational prayers across the country, restarting services from Wednesday.
During Ramadan, there will be no lockdown on mosques, mosques will be functional.
“We have pledged that the medical suggestion of social distancing will be maintained and mosques will host prayers five times a day and Friday prayers as well … all of these will remain ongoing.”
Taqi Usmani, an influential preacher, likened congregational prayers to ‘essential services’ like banks that have been exempted from the countrywide lockdown.
“For a Muslim, offering prayers as part of a congregation and Friday prayers are an important need,” he told reporters in the southern city Karachi on Tuesday.
Why lock down is inevitable?
Pakistan has experienced an upsurge of COVID-19 cases since last two weeks. This exponential increase in the cases is the result of failure to take precautionary measures. In the meantime, the government has eased lockdown which has increased human activities in cities and rural areas. According to Dr Zafar Mirza, more than 80 per cent of cases which are reported now in Pakistan have been transmitted locally. This indicates that strict lockdown is the need of the hour to avoid massive spread of coronavirus in Pakistan.