Asad Umar says number of Covid-19 cases to fall in the end of June


Planning Minister Asad Umar on Friday said the number of Covid-19 cases will fall at the end of June to 225,000 or less, much lower than earlier projections. 

At a press briefing, Umar, who was flanked by Information Minister Shibli Faraz, said the government had earlier projected the number of coronavirus cases during the month to reach 300,000 mark. However, he said the responsibility shown by the masses and government efforts have led to declines in the cases. 

As of June 26, Pakistan has reported 195,745 Covid-19 cases, with 3,942 deaths and 84,168 recoveries.

“Most people realised their responsibility. [But] Not everyone realised [their responsibility] and as a result, the government had to take some administrative measures. As a result, we are now looking at 225,000 cases instead of 300,000 — which we initially feared,” said Umar while speaking at a press conference. 

The figures were estimated by the National Command and Control Centre (NCOC). 

The NCOC is led by a group of experts — data, medical and governance — and is responsible for gathering data, identifying key trends, outlining strategies and coordinating responses with provinces for Covid-19. 

Umar also outlined the efforts taken by the NCOC to contain the spread of Covid-19 in the country. 

Last month, the centre had directed provinces to implement smart lockdowns. Smart lockdowns are enforced in Covid-19 hotspots by singling out the locality of clusters. 

However, he also warned that the fall in cases does not mean the danger is over. He advised the public to observe social distancing and stay at home as much as possible. 

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