No plan to close schools for now, says Punjab education minister
LAHORE: No plan to close schools for now despite a slight increase in coronavirus numbers, clarified Punjab Education Minister Murad Raas on Sunday.
Punjab Education Minister Murad Raas said that the Punjab government was keeping a close eye on coronavirus cases in the province's schools. He said that random testing was being conducted and a slight increase in numbers has been observed.
"Situation being analysed on daily basis. There is NO plan to close Schools as of right now. Please follow SOPs," he tweeted.
Coronavirus cases in Pakistan have been surging for the past few weeks. On Thursday, the country reported over 1,000 new COVID-19 cases in a day - its highest total since July 29, 2020.
Federal Minister of Planning Asad Umar had expressed concerns on the rising positivity rate. He had said that what happens next depends on how much people adapt to the coronavirus lifestyle and follow the SOPs.
"We are not careful like we aren't in the past few weeks, then we have India and Iran as examples of the havoc the virus can create," he had warned while speaking on Geo Pakistan.
Umar said the government's policy to implement the SOPs instead of a total lockdown has been successful. "Lockdowns have been imposed in many of Islamabad's streets," he had said, adding that the government was looking to take preventive measures to control the spread.
"The NCOC is keeping a close eye on the daily situation, If necessary, we are prepared to take strict actions."
Punjab has imposed 491 "micro smart lockdowns" across the province with 431 in Lahore alone while Sindh Education Minister Saeed Ghani hinted at school closure due to a surge in coronavirus cases.