ISLAMABAD - The National Command and Control Centre (NCOC) will be holding its first provincial meeting in Lahore today.

This will be the first time that the body constituted in the aftermath of Covid-19, will be holding a meeting at a provincial level.

The body plans to hold similar meetings in other provincial capitals of the country as well.

Besides appreciating the steps taken by the respective provinces to combat Covid-19, the purpose of these meetings will be to ensure uniformity in the country’s response to the disease.

All provincial chief secretaries will brief the meeting about the measures taken to ensure implementation of SOPs and management of cattle markets in their respective provinces, according to the NCOC.

The meeting will be chaired by Minister for Planning and Development Asad Umar.

The meeting will discuss hotspot areas, contact tracing strategy and testing with respect to Punjab, whereas the interior minister will also preside over the discussion regarding Eid-ul-Azha, cattle markets and Muharram in the province. The meeting will be attended by the NCOC’s core team including its National Coordinator Lt Gen Hamood-uz-Zaman, Interior Minister Brig (retd) Ijaz Shah, Dr Faisal Sultan, Punjab CM Usman Buzdar, Punjab law and health ministers, Punjab chief secretary and IG Punjab Police. Provincial chief secretaries and other officials of Punjab’s provincial departments will attend via video link.

The NCOC has suggested setting up cattle markets outside cities, compulsory testing of animal handlers, market timings from morning to evening and engaging religious scholars for the implementation of SOPs.