LAHORE - Punjab government on Tuesday enforced two week long strict lockdown in COVID-19 hotspots in major cities including Lahore to check spread of the virus.

There will be complete lockdown with markets to be closed except medical stores, food shops and other outlets of essential items in 80 worst-affected areas in Lahore.

There will be complete restriction of movement in and out of 80 areas of Wagha Town, Allama Iqbal Town, Samanabad Zone, Nishtar Town, Gulberg Town, Cantt, Data Gunj Bakhsh Zone and Ravi Town in Lahore for the next two weeks with the objective to break the transmission of coronavirus among the population in the city.

Punjab Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid said, a thorough analysis of the COVID-19 cases will be made and if a significant reduction is seen, the lockdown may be eased before two weeks.

 “The only solution to the corona pandemic is social distancing and observing the precautionary measures,” she said and requested to the people to observe precautionary measures otherwise the government may have to extend the lockdown to other areas.

Meanwhile, fifty more succumbed to COVID-19 in Punjab on Tuesday, taking the death toll to 1,081.

As many as 1,740 new cases of novel coronavirus were also reported from across the province, raising the number of COVID-19 patients to 55,878. With 11 more healthcare workers getting infection, number of affected doctors, nurses and paramedics reached 936.

So far 400 casualties have been reported from Lahore,  216 Rawalpindi, 94 Multan, 91 Faisalabad, 50 Gujranwala, 44 Sialkot, 25 each Gujrat and Rahim Yar Khan, 24 Bahawalpur, 15 Sargodha, 12 Sheikhupura, 11 Dera Ghazi Khan, 10 Sahiwal, eight each Kasur and Nankana Sahib, six each Muzafargarh and Toba Tek Singh, five each Attock and Mianwali, four Hafizabad, three each Jhang and Jhelum, two each Rajanpur, Narowal, Bahawalnagar, Khushab, Okara, Bhakkar and Vehari and one each from Khanewal and Lodhran.

Out of 1,740 new cases, 816 have been reported from Lahore, 218 Rawalpindi, 113 Multan, 83 Attock, 81 Faisalabad, 54 Sialkot, 47 Gujrat, 45 Bahawalpur, 34 Sahiwal, 28 Gujranwala, 24 Rahim Yar Khan, 20 each Dera Ghazi Khan and Sheikhupura, 17 each Toba Tek Singh and Sargodha, 16 Layyah, 14 Rajanpur, 11 Muzafargarh, 10 each Mianwali, Okara and Lodhran, nine Bahawalnagar, eight Khushab, seven Khanewal, five Vehari, four Chiniot, three Hafizabad, two Pakpattan and one each from Kasur, Jhelum, Mandi Bahauddin and Chakwal.

So far 28,177 COVID-19 patients have been reported from Lahore, 4,465 Rawalpindi, 3,873 Faisalabad, 3,836 Multan, 2,112 Gujranwala, 1,562 Sialkot, 1,445 Gujrat, 1,100 Dera Ghazi Khan, 903 Bahawalpur, 761 Sheikhupura, 737 Sargodha, 723 Rahim Yar Khan, 665 Muzafargarh, 496 Hafizabad, 459 Kasur, 378 Sahiwal, 337 Jhelum, 315 Toba Tek Singh, 312 Vehari, 285 Layyah, 274 Bahawalnagar, 268 Attock, 262 Nankana Sahib, 241 Lodhran, 230 Mandi Bahauddin, 194 Jhang, 182 Okara, 178 Khushab, 170 each Mianwali and Chiniot, 167 Bhakkar, 163 Narowal, 155 Khanewal, 117 Rajanpur, 106 Pakpattan and 60 Chakwal.

Out of total COVID-19 patients in Punjab so far, as many as 1,926 are preachers of Tableeghi Jamaat, 768 pilgrims, who returned from Iran, 86 prisoners in nine districts and 53,008 citizens, who mostly have fallen prey to local transmission.

As per spokesperson of Corona Monitoring Room at Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department, so far 3,66,435 tests have been performed in the province.  Out of these, he said, 55,678 have been tested positive for the virus.

He said that 17,403 cases have been reported from 31-45 years age group. As many as 16,278 cases have been reported from 16-30 years age group.

He said that lowest number of cases, 918, have been reported from above 75 years age group.

He said that 17,730 patients have recovered and returned home, 1,081 died while 37,067 were isolated at homes or under treatment at different quarantine centres and health facilities.