ISLAMABAD - Minister for information and Broadcasting Senator Shibli Faraz said that the government has devised a proactive strategy to contain and prevent the spread of coronavirus pandemic keeping in view the ground realities and the country’s economic situation.

Briefing the media about Cabinet meeting in Islamabad here on Tuesday, the Minister said the government has been making efforts to save the people and their economic life simultaneously. The Minister said Pakistan cannot sustain complete lockdown in the country.

He said a comprehensive plan is being pursued in collaboration with National Command and Operation Centre and all the relevant departments. Shibli Faraz said the number of testing labs, ventilators and oxygen beds have been increased to provide best medical treatment facilities to the patients of coronavirus.

He said the number of corona patients increased when the people neglected SOPs during Eid-ul-Fitr. He said if we will not adhere to the SOPs, the situation will further deteriorate in coming days.

The Minister appealed to the general public to strictly adhere to the precautionary measures to protect themselves from coronavirus.

He said lockdown will be carried out in the targeted and affected areas of the coronavirus and fine will be imposed on those who will violate the SOPs.

Citing example of lockdown in India, Minister Shibli Faraz said that Indian government imposed lockdown all over India with a total of 635 suspects in India, which has increased up to 200,000 suspects till June 1,2020.

The Cabinet meeting was also informed that capacity of coronavirus testing in Pakistan have increased manifold. A total of 700 laboratories are making tests of Covid-19 in Pakistan with capacity of 25,000 tests a day, he stated.

Total numbers of ventilators in the country have been increased to 4800, while additional 1300 ventilators will be provided soon, he said.

The Minister said that Prime Minister Imran Khan has decided to bring back stranded Pakistanis from Middle East on priority grounds.

The cabinet was also informed on availability of petrol in the country.

The cabinet was informed that 2,36,000 tonnes of petrol is available in the country while ships carrying 3,93,000 tonnes of petrol are in line.

The cabinet was informed that scarcity issue of petrol in the country has been resolved in all major cities and responsible elements will be taken to task who made artificial shortage of petrol in the country.

The Prime Minister in the cabinet meeting instructed authorities concerned to address the issues being faced by merchants in Pakistan to export fruits and vegetables to neighbouring countries of Iran and Afghanistan.

The Prime Minister also appealed to public to play responsible and proactive role to ensure implementation on SOPs against coronavirus pandemic.

He said that nation should get united against this pandemic, which has shaken the major economies of the world.