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Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) has supported the demand of the Pakistan Medical Association (PMA) and doctors for complete lockdown throughout the country, and enforcing the writ of the State for ensuring social distancing, in true and strict sense, at all public places including mosques.

The PMA and senior doctors on April 23rd in Karachi had warned the authorities that introducing relaxations in the lockdown will cause a spike in the COVID-19 cases that would in turn cripple the country's already fragile healthcare system.

Therefore, a day after when the confirmed coronavirus cases jumped past 11,700 with 248 deaths, the government decided to extend lockdown till the middle of Ramzan, while cautioning the nation that the fight against the virus had entered a decisive phase that would set the future course of action regarding the restrictions.

Vice-Chairman PBC Abid Saqi in a statement issued on Saturday said: "The decision of the federal government to allow gatherings in mosques for Friday and Taraweeh prayers reflects undue leniency towards religious monopolists, which being violative of standards of social distancing and other related basic parameters, will, for sure, largely add to already alarming number of persons infected by coronavirus."

"Our already weak and chocked healthcare system will absolutely be unable to meet and cater such a situation," he added.

The vice chairman of the council therefore, urged upon the federal government to review its policy and ensure placing of complete lockdown throughout the country without any exception and leniency specially to religious monopolists, for saving precious lives of the people particularly in view of anticipated gravity of situation in Pakistan in coming few weeks as alarmed by the WHO and our own medical care experts.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020

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