Vaccination cards to be checked as Sindh enters lockdown till August 8

The Sindh government on Friday announced a lockdown in the province from July 31 to August 8. The decision was taken keeping the rapid spread of coronavirus in the province in mind. 

Karachi has become the main focus of the lockdown with Senator Murtaza Wahab claiming that 2,000 new coronavirus cases have been reported from the city every day for the past few days.

While announcing the lockdown, Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah said that the vaccination cards of citizens roaming the streets would be checked during the lockdown and all government offices would be closed from next week. He warned that unvaccinated government employees would not be issued salaries after August 31.

Lockdown directions at a glance:

  • No one is allowed to come out to any public place without a valid reason.

  • No employee or worker over the age of 55 shall be called in to work at offices.

  • Grocery Stores, fish, meat, vegetable/fruit vendors and dairy shops shall remain closed from 6pm to 6am.

  • No more than two persons should travel in a car. A third person can be allowed only in cases where a sick person being carried requires such an attendant. Pillion riding on motorcycles is not permitted.

  • If the virus is contracted by any worker or labourer then the owner or management shall accordingly take necessary measures including suspension of activities till a clearance is given by health authorities.

Key exemptions:

  • People going out to buy groceries and medicines in “extreme emergency”.

  • Personnel related to health services like hospitals, laboratories and medical stores.

  • Individuals in need of medical care with an attendant where necessary.

  • Persons going for vaccination within their respective district of residence.

  • Unavoidable religious rites like funeral prayers, burial and related occasions provided that all precautions are taken and a distance of three feet is maintained after prior intimation to SHO of the area.

  • Cellular companies service staff going for repair or maintenance of towers/cables

  • Banks (with limited staff for services)

  • Essential municipal services

  • Home delivery under e-commerce provided that staff at warehouses and the delivery personnel are fully vaccinated and in possession of vaccination certificates for inspection by law enforcement officials.

The decisions come a day after federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar rejected the idea of closing down entire cities to curb the spread of coronavirus.

Umar, who is also the head of the NCOC, said on Thursday that Pakistan should pursue smart lockdowns, a strategy that had succeeded in the past.

However, earlier today the NCOC announced that that the forum "critically reviewed" the disease spread in Karachi and decided to take all possible measures to assist the provincial government in combatting the rise in cases.