ISLAMABAD                -        The National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on Tuesday said that the surge in COVID-19 cases was likely to accentuate due to unsatisfactory following of guidelines and standard operating procedures (SOP) by masses.

The meeting reviewed and analysed the COVID-19 latest cases including existing coronavirus cases, deaths, patients on ventilators and estimates of new possible coronavirus cases of Eid holidays shared by the ministry of health. The forum noted that the following of standard operating procedures (SOPs) and guidelines regarding COVID-19 remained very scarce during Eid-ul-Fitr holidays. The forum stressed enhanced role of federating units for implementing guidelines and SOPs of COVID-19 to contain the pandemic.

The meeting also reviewed the situation arising out of coronavirus in the country. According to the officials, a meeting of National Command and Operation Center was held here which discussed future course of action in the wake of the pandemic. The participants of the meeting reviewed the situation of coronavirus in the country and the steps taken to contain its spread, said the officials further.

A day earlier, Special Assistant to PM on Health, Dr Zafar Mirza had warned against taking Covid-19 lightly, as the cases and deaths could increase in the country in the coming days. In a media briefing, he said the government will evaluate the prevailing situation immediately after Eid and can review its decision of relaxation in lockdown if the situation gets worse.

The Special Assistant said that lockdown was relaxed in the country in view of Eid festival but it seems people are under the wrong impression that prevalence of disease is reducing. He said it is being observed that movement and interaction of people has increased during Eid holidays and SOPs are not being properly followed, which could lead to disastrous situation. The SAPM said social distancing and other precautionary measures is a key to stop spread of this killer disease. Dr Zafar Mirza said this Eid has been dedicated to frontline health workers who are selflessly fighting this disease.

The number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in the country crossed 58,000 and over 1200 people lost their lives in this disease so far. The authorities have time and again appealed to the people to strictly observe SOPs including avoiding close contact, maintaining social distancing, wearing face masks, frequent washing of hands with soap or sanitizer and other directions given by the government from time to time. However, the people have been found giving least importance to the government directions.