The Punjab government has decided to ease its coronavirus lockdown after May 9, whilw shopkeepers have been directed to strictly follow SOPs. The province has reported 8,693 cases of the novel coronavirus so far. Textile, steel and spare part shops will be allowed to operate for six hours. Parks will also be reopened for the public, but they’ll not be allowed to go on any swings or rides.
The Anjuman-e-Tajran Lahore has said that they will open their markets on May 10. The Centre has put the lockdown in place till May 9. A decision on its extension has yet to be made. Pakistan has reported at least 21,500 known cases of the novel virus so far. Lahore traders said they’ll “break” the lockdown if the government doesn’t lift it after May 9 as they want to resume their businesses.
The Punjab government has ratified the allotment of up to 25 acres of army land to 47 civilian government officials. The land was meant for the families of the martyred soldiers and war veterans under the Army Welfare Scheme (AWS). The allotments had been made without legal sanction on the orders of former dictator Gen Pervez Musharraf in contravention of the merit and law.
One hundred passengers who reached Islamabad from Abu Dhabi on April 28 tested positive for the novel coronavirus. The health department confirmed Monday. The special flight brought more than 200 people to Pakistan. The passengers were quarantined and tested for the virus. Those who have tested positive have been shifted to Fatima Jinnah university, which has been converted into a quarantine centre.
The Punjab government has extended the hours of Utility Stores across the province. According to a notification issued by the government, the stores will now be open from 9am to 8pm. People will be able to visit the stores after iftaar as well. The primary and secondary health department has also issued a notification on this and said the decision was made to facilitate people.
Petroleum companies have resumed the supply of petrol to pumps in Karachi after more than 20 hours on Sunday. Supply had been suspended due to a shortage in the reserves of petrol and diesel at companies and refineries across the country. Following a decrease in fuel prices by the government, demand for the commodities had increased resulting in pumps running out almost immediately.
Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing has said that Beijing is confident that Pakistan will soon overcome the COVID-19 challenge. Ambassador Jing said Pakistan had a lower mortality rate of the virus. About 60% of Pakistan’s population is under the age of 30. Patients infected with the novel coronavirus are mainly young people, with mild symptoms so it is easier to treat them.
The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has summoned Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif for the third time in a money laundering case. According to a notification by the corruption watchdog, the PML-N leader has been directed to appear before it with documents detailing the properties inherited by him. Officials had said that NAB had received the response submitted by the PML-N president.
Prime Minister Imran Khan has ordered provincial governments to ensure that daily commodities are available in markets at reduced prices. He ordered to do so after a recent cut in petrol prices. On Thursday, the federal government slashed the prices of petroleum products by Rs15 per litre for the month of May. The new price of petrol will be Rs81.58 per litre.
The All Pakistan CNG Association has announced a cut of Rs12.5 in the prices of CNG from May 1. APCNGA President Ghayas Paracha said this is following the global slump in LNG prices. After the slash, the prices of CNG across Punjab and Islamabad will be Rs72 a kg. The prices of petroleum products have been cut as well.