'Major cities may be closed down if current COVID situation prevails'

cities, covid, NCOC, prevails, asad umar, neo tv

Islamabad (Staff Report/Agencies): Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives and head of National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) Asad Umar on Wednesday hinted out further restrictions to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Speaking to the media after chairing a meeting of the NCOC, Asad Umar said the coronavirus situation in the country had become “extremely serious”, adding that major cities may be closed down if the current trajectory continues. The minister urged the nation to understand the gravity of the situation.

The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Pakistan rose to 772,381 on Wednesday after 5,499 new coronavirus cases surfaced in the country during the last 24 hours.

Overall 274,196 cases were confirmed in Sindh, 276,535 in Punjab, 108,462 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 21,127 in Balochistan, 70,984 in Islamabad 5,204 in Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) and 15,873 in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK).

According to the government’s COVID-19 portal, the death toll related to coronavirus has reached to 16,600 with 148 fatalities reported during the last 24 hours.

Over the last twenty four hours, total number of recovered COVID-19 patients across the country reached 672,619 after another 5,488 virus recoveries were reported.

Meanwhile, a new study reveals that the coronavirus pandemic has created the worst crisis in Asia-Pacific since World War II, exposing structural weaknesses and fault lines, and revealing gaps in health services, social protection, and digital connectivity in the region.

The study, Beyond The Pandemic - Building back better from crises in Asia, has been prepared by the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific.