Pakistan: Over 5,000 COVID-19 cases reported in 24 hours

Islamabad: As the third wave of coronavirus is at its peak in Pakistan, the country reported on Friday 5,234 infections in a period of twenty-four hours, according to National Command & Operation Centre (NCOC) data.

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This is the first time when Pakistan has reported more than 5,000 cases in a single day in the last nine months. On June 19, 2020 the country had detected 6,604 infections.

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With new infections in last one day, the country’s tally of cases has surged to 678,125.

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According to the NCOC portal, 83 persons have succumbed to COVID-19 in last 24 hours taking the country’s overall death toll to 14,613.

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Deadly wave

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Minister for Planning, Division & Special Initiative Asad Umar has cautioned against a severe, deadly wave of COVID-19 that has caught the country in its grip.

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“The entire region is experiencing a severe covid spike,” says the minister in a tweet adding, “it is vital that we all contribute to containing the spread by taking sensible precautions”, said the minister.

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Wear a mask, avoid crowded places, wash hands or sanitize often, reduce travel to only essential work, he further said in his post.

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Meanwhile, the Pakistan government has approved price for the Chinese vaccine CanSino to be used by the private secor for those “who don’t want to stand in queue and wait for the doses.”

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According to a decision taken in the Federal Cabinet during a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan the private sector has been allowed to import and sell vaccine for PKR 4,425 (Dh101.90).

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While briefing the media about the cabinet’s decision Science & Technology Minister Fawad Chaudhry said the cabinet has made decision only about the Chinese vaccine but after the Sindh High Court’s (SHC) detailed judgment, the Russian vaccine Sputnik V will also be considered for price-fixing.

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Private sector

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The Sindh High Court (SHC) had on Thursday in a short order permitted import of Sputnik V vaccine to be used for commercial purpose by the private sector.

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The decision came during the hearing of an appeal by the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) against the release of the Sputnik V vaccine by a private company.

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Fawad Chaudhry made it clear that despite fixing price and allowing its use privately, 98 per cent of population will be adminstered jabs quite free of cost.

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Only 2 per cent population, people who don’t want to wait in queues have been given the offer to purchase it from the market, the minister said.

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