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Army deployed in Punjab, KP for Covid-19 SOP implementation: minister

The Federal Ministry has approved the deployment of troops of the Pakistan Army in all provinces except Sindh to ensure the implementation of coronavirus SOPs.

A notification issued on Sunday stated that the army has been sent to Gilgit Baltistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab, Islamabad, Balochistan, and Azad Jammu and Kashmir to help the administrations with curbing the spread of the deadly virus.

“The army has always stood with the nation during times of calamities and distress,” Federal Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed said.

All these provinces can take help from the army according to their requirements, he announced, adding that a decision regarding Sindh is yet to be taken.

Rasheed said that the directives were announced after the coronavirus situation in neighbouring India worsened. “Graveyards and crematoriums are full there.”

To prevent a situation such as this in Pakistan, the army has been given the responsibility to ensure Covid-19 SOPs are followed, the minister added.

In an NCOC meeting on April 23, Prime Minister Imran Khan said that Pakistan Army will work with the law enforcers to ensure the implementation of SOPs. “They will be deployed on roads along with the police now.”

Please follow the SOPs and wear a mask every time you leave your house, he said. “If you start wearing masks today and make this a practice till Eid, then we won’t have to take any strict measures.”

Pakistan has reported 5,611 new covid-19 cases and 118 deaths in the last 24 hours. The toll has now reached 17,117.

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