LAHORE                    -               Coronavirus continued to haunt people with increasing intensity as 436 more were tested positive in Punjab on Monday, the highest number of cases reported in a single day since the pandemic outbreak.  The number of confirmed cases in the province has now reached 1,816.

A whopping number of 352 new COVID19 cases have been reported from quarantine facilities for preachers belonging to Tableeghi Jamat and pilgrims who recently returned from Iran. As many as 63 new COVID19 cases were reported from amongst people having travel history or got infection through local transmission. As many as 21 more prisoners were also tested positive for the deadly virus, taking the tally to 49.

Out of 1816 confirmed COVID19 patients, 577 are pilgrims who recently returned from Iran, 527 preachers of Tableeghi Jamat, 49 prisoners and 663 citizens who either had travel history or fell victim to local transmission of the virus.  Out of 577 confirmed patients from amongst pilgrims, 359 are at quarantine centre in Multan, 213 in Dera Ghazi Khan and five in Faisalabad.

Of the 527 confirmed COVID19 preachers, 398 are at quarantine centre at Raiwind, 31 in Hafizabad, 15 in Rahim Yar Khan, 14 in Vehari, 13 each in Sargodha and Layyah, 10 in Jhelum, eight in Gujrat, six in Rawalpindi, four each in Khushab and Sialkot, three in Mandi Bahauddin, two in Nankana Sahib and one each in Bhakkar and Rajanpur. As many as 10,263 preachers who have recently attended Tableeghi Ijtema are at quarantine centres in 33 districts for testing and isolation.

So far 663 citizens have also been tested positive for the virus in 28 districts of the province. These people either have a travel history or they got infected through local transmission of virus.

The highest number of cases have been reported from Lahore where 291 patients are under treatment at different centres. As many as 93 patients are under treatment in Gujrat, 58 in Rawalpindi, 32 in Gujranwala, 30 in Jhelum, 21 in Faisalabad, 18 in DG Khan, 17 in Sialkot, 14 in Mandi Bahauddin, 13 each in Nankana Sahib and Vehari, nine in Bahawalnagar, eight in Kasur, six each in Hafizabad, Chiniot and Narowal, five in Sargodha, four in Multan, three each in Rahim Yar Khan, Mianwali, Bahawalpur and Lodhran and one each in Sheikhupura, Attock, Layyah, Okara and Khushab.

Punjab Health Department has forwarded SOPs for handling of COVID19 patients and saving other prisoners in jails to the Home Department.  As no fatality was reported on Monday, COVID19 related casualties in Punjab remained 15 including seven in Lahore, four in Rawalpindi and one each in Faisalabad, Jhelum, Gujrat and Rahim Yar Khan. As per spokesperson of Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department, all patients were getting treatment at quarantine centres and isolation wards at public sector hospitals. He said that serious patients were immediately shifted to High Dependency Units. He urged people to stay at home, frequently wash hands and use hand sanitizer. He advised social distancing and adopting precautionary measures while attending sick family members.