Pakistan confirms 630 new coronavirus cases in 24 hours

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has registered another two deaths and 630 infections from coronavirus pandemic during the last 24 hours (Monday), showed the statistics released by the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on Tuesday morning.

The latest figures released by the NCOC suggested that after the addition of two new deaths, the overall toll has now surged to 28,945 whereas the number of total infections now stood at 1,297,865 after adding the fresh 630 cases.

During the last 24 hours (Tuesday), 44,198 tests were conducted throughout Pakistan whereas the positivity ratio stood at 1.42 percent. The number of patients in critical care was 641.

During the last 24 hours (Monday), as many as 187 patients have recovered from the virus whereas the total recoveries stood at 1,257,7147. As of Tuesday, the total count of active cases in the country was recorded at 10,345.

As many as 483,165 coronavirus cases have so far been confirmed in Sindh, 445,630 in Punjab, 181,498 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 108,823 in Islamabad, 33,648 in Balochistan, 34,672 in Azad Kashmir and 10,429 in Gilgit-Baltistan.

Moreover, 13,075 individuals have lost their lives to the pandemic in Punjab so far, 7,673 in Sindh, 5,933 in KP, 967 in Islamabad, 746 in Azad Kashmir, 365 in Balochistan and 186 in Gilgit Baltistan.

Global Developments

Here are the global developments in the coronavirus crisis:

– US boosters for kids –

US health authorities approve Pfizer’s Covid-19 booster shot for children as young as 12, and reduce the wait time between initial vaccination and an extra dose from six months to five, for all ages.

– Cruise chaos –

More than 2,000 people on a cruise ship in Indian waters are prevented from disembarking, while some 3,000 passengers, mostly Germans, see their Canary Islands-bound cruise halted in Lisbon after Covid-19 outbreaks.

– Dutch schools to reopen –

Dutch schools will reopen next week as planned after a longer than usual Christmas holiday, the government announces, despite a tough lockdown amid rising infections fuelled by the Omicron Covid-19 variant.

– French vaccine pass debated –

French MPs begin debating draft legislation on a “vaccine pass”, that would require most people to be vaccinated against Covid-19 to enter public spaces such as bars, restaurants and long-distance public transport.

– Israel eases travel curbs –

Israel begins administering fourth Covid vaccine shots to over 60s and health workers, and will from Sunday allow entry to vaccinated visitors from low-risk countries, five weeks after it shut its borders to slow the spread of the Omicron variant.

– Football hit again –

Tottenham are hit by fresh coronavirus concerns ahead of their League Cup semi-final first leg at Chelsea on Wednesday, while Bayern Munich’s Covid crisis grows deeper with Lucas Hernandez and Tanguy Nianzou the latest players to test positive.

– More than 5.4 million dead –

The coronavirus has killed at least 5,441,446 people since the outbreak emerged in China in December 2019, according to an AFP tally compiled from official sources on Monday.

The US has recorded the most Covid deaths with 826,064, followed by Brazil with 619,133, India with 481,893 and Russia with 311,353.

Taking into account excess mortality linked to Covid-19, the World Health Organization estimates the overall death toll could be two to three times higher.

CAA makes RAT of passengers coming from Europe mandatory

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: In view of the surge in the cases of omicron variant of the coronavirus, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), on the instructions of the National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) has made Rapid Antigen Tests (RAT) of the passengers arriving in Pakistan from the European countries mandatory, on Tuesday.

However, there is a relaxation in the rule in the case of flights arriving from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) as the passengers of only 50 percent of flights from these countries will have to undergo the test.  

At the same time, the CAA has also made it obligatory for those due to travel to Pakistan to undergo PCR tests 48 hours before boarding a flight.

Similarly, coronavirus test has also been made mandatory for passengers aged 15 or above.

And in case any passenger tests positive for the virus on arrival at the airport, he or she will have to spend 10 days in quarantine at a place designated by the government for the purpose.

However, if the passenger prefers to quarantine at a hotel or any other private place, he or she will have to bear its expenses himself or herself.    

The new rule will be applicable from tomorrow (Wednesday, January 5).