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Educational institutions in Punjab to remain closed till Sep 15

Minister urges people to stay safe, stay at home. (Source: AFP)

LAHORE: Punjab Education Minister Dr Murad Rass on Friday announced that the closure of all educational institutions in the province has been extended till September 15.

“All Public and Private Schools of Punjab to remain closed until Wednesday, September 15th, 2021,” he wrote on his official Twitter handle, urging residents to stay home and stay safe.

According to a statement issued by the provincial education ministry, the decision to close schools has been taken due to the current COVID situation in the province. The minister also emphasised the implementation of SOPs “as much as possible”.

The provincial education minister made the announcement a day after the National Command and Operations Centre (NCOC) extended restrictions in 24 high-risk districts amid the worsening situation of the COVID-19 pandemic.

NCOC meeting

On Thursday, the NCOC had decided to extend special non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) till September 15 in 24 high disease risk districts of Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT).

The NCOC, during its daily session, had carried out a review of special NPIs enforced in 24 high disease prevalence districts. The decision to continue the restrictions was taken amid significant pressure on critical care, hospital admissions and oxygen requirements.

As per the special NPIs, there was a complete ban on all sorts of indoor and outdoor gatherings, all types of indoor gyms, intercity public transport and the educational sector till September 15, the Forum decided.

COVID-19 situation in Punjab

Punjab, during the last 24-hour period, reported 1,705 COVID-19 cases and 36 more deaths due to the virus. According to provincial health secretary Imran Sikandar Baloch, nine deaths were reported from Lahore during the period.

He said that active cases in Punjab now total 27,097, adding that the tally of the positive cases in the province stood at 410,464. He further said that till date, at least 12,169 patients have succumbed to the virus in the province and around 371,198 patients have recovered completely.