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Schools in cities with positivity ratio above 5% to be closed, offices timings restricted to 2pm

Federal Minister for Planning Asad Umar. 

ISLAMABAD: The federal government has decided to shut schools in cities where the COVID-19 positivity ratio is above 5% and restricted office timings to 2pm with 50% work from home policy.

Briefing the media about the steps taken by the National Coordination Committee (NCC) to curb the spread of coronavirus, Federal Minister for Planning Asad Umar said a comprehensive plan will be prepared in consultation with the provinces in case lockdowns become necessary in certain cities.

“All schools will be closed in cities where the positivity ratio is above 5% till Eid. Classes 9-12 will also not be held in-person,” he said.

He further said that outdoor dining is also being banned till Eid and only takeaway is allowed.

Indoor gyms have also been ordered to close down under the new restrictions.

Asad Umar said that markets will be closed by 6pm except for essential services and a list will be issued of those businesses that are allowed to operate.

The federal minister said that a decision has also been taken to restrict office timings till 2pm so that people can do Eid shopping easily within the time limits set by the government.

“The 50% work from home policy will continue,” he added.

He also urged the masses to not wait for the last three days of Ramadan for Eid shopping so as to avoid a rush in marketplaces.

Regarding air travel restrictions, Asad Umar said a detailed policy is being made under which the number of passengers coming to Pakistan will be cut down.

“[Matters relating to] passengers’ testing and quarantine will also be decided,” he said.

Pakistan, the minister said, is utilizing 90% of the oxygen already being produced, so the government is working to enhance capacity and will import the gas if needed.

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