LAHORE/ABBOTTABAD           -       The cabinet committee for corona control which met here Tuesday took an in-principle decision to open industries, restaurants, marriage halls, cinemas and further decided to forward recommendations to National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) for final approval.

The cabinet body decided that the final decision about opening Murree and other tourist-spots will be made by NCOC. It also recommended that all allied businesses of the construction industry should be opened in Punjab while a special meeting of the cabinet committee for corona control will be called for opening of educational institutions. The decision of opening the gyms, indoor sports, beauty salons and clinics etc was, however, linked with seeking NOC from the concerned departments.

The meeting was briefed that the number of corona positive cases was 2 to 3 per cent in Punjab. It was further briefed that 3,000 beds will be reserved for corona patients and hospitals will be opened for routine medical services after declaring them corona-free. During the last 24 hours, five patients have died while 39 corona cases have been reported, health secretary told the meeting.  Provincial Ministers Dr Yasmin Rashid, Mian Aslam Iqbal, Hashim Jawan Bakht, chief secretary, SMBR, health secretaries, secretary information, DC Lahore, DG PFA and others attended the meeting.

Galyat, Kaghan, Naran to remain closed

Meanwhile, Hazara Division Commissioner Riaz Khan Mahsood Tuesday advised the tourists from across the country not to visit the Hazara division as the KP government had imposed a ban on tourism in the wake of COVID-19.

In a press statement, he said that following the directives of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government, the tourism spots in Hazara division including Galyat, Kaghan and Naran would remain closed during August, adding, the tourists are not allowed to enter these areas.

The tourists were suffering from the prevailing situation as they were being stopped and returned back by Police posts while they were trying to enter upper parts of Hazara division.

Before Eid vacations, the DC Mansehra imposed a ban on the entry of tourists in Kaghan, Naran and other tourist spots under section 144 and also canceled the vacations of the Kaghan Development Authority for monitoring.

Following the ban, Mansehra police established check posts at all entry points on Hazara motorway and Karakoram Highway (KKH) where they check the National Identity Cards (NIC) and allowed only locals to continue their journey. Although Mansehra police launched a campaign on social and print media about the ban on tourists visits well before Eid to inform interested people who wanted to visit district Mansehra during the vacations. Despite this, a large number of people from Punjab and KP were reached Mansehra who were sent back.

Similarly in Abbottabad, police established check posts at all entry points of the district particularly in Galyat, Sajji Kot and Umbrella waterfalls.

In district Haripur, the situation was different where despite the restriction for tourists a large number of tourists from Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Hazara division and other districts of KP reached Khanpur Lake, Tarbela Lake, Bhuttri Dam, River Haro and many other streams and waterfalls.

Rescue 1122 Haripur took special measures for the safety of tourists, deputed a rescue boat and swimmer at Khanpur Lake those are working round the clock.