Balochistan extends ‘smart lockdown’ till 15th

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QUETTA: The Balochistan government has extended the smart lockdown to stem spread of the novel coronavirus in the province till July 15, media reported on Wednesday.

Provincial home department in a notification announced that the smart lockdown would continue in Quetta and other parts of the province until July 15.

Shopping malls, markets, shops, warehouses, auto-repair shops and hair salons will remain open from 9:00 am to 7:00 pm. All businesses will remain closed on Fridays.

The notification further said that tandoors, shops selling dairy products, blood banks, medical stores and tailor shops will be allowed to remain open for 24 hours. Restaurants will be allowed to provide home delivery and take-away services throughout the day as well.

Educational institutions throughout Balochistan have been directed to remain closed till July 15. Cinemas, wedding halls, farmhouses and picnic points will remain closed for masses indefinitely.

An indefinite ban continues to be placed on a gathering of more than 10 people, political rallies, pillion riding, social and religious events.

According to a notification, strict action will be taken under Section 144 against those found to be violating the government’s standard operating procedures (SOPs) for curbing the spread of the coronavirus.

It is to be mentioned that at least 50 new coronavirus cases emerged in Balochistan during 24 hours on Tuesday, taking the total number of infections in the province to 10,467.

According to the daily situation report of the Health Directorate of Balochistan, three more people succumbed to the disease, taking the death toll in the province to 121.

Out of the total COVID-19 cases, 7,970 were reported in Quetta, 317 in Jaffarabad, 204 in Mastung, 200 from Khuzdar, 183 from Chagai, 151 in Lasbela and other areas of the province.