PM Wants Provinces To Reconsider “Extreme Steps”, Defends Handling Of Coronavirus Pandemic
Prime Minister Imran Khan has called for reviewing what he describes as “extreme steps” taken by various provincial administrations to contain the Coronavirus pandemic. In his view, such measures would “impact the economy drastically” and would end up disproportionately affecting the poor.
The PM was concerned about the halt to transportation, taking the view that it would adversely affect supplies of essential goods throughout the country. He cited the example of Gilgit-Baltistan’s fuel shortage due to measures taken in the port of Karachi.
Explaining his view of a lockdown, the Prime Minister said:
“There are multiple levels of lockdown and a curfew is the last stage.”
The PM sees the lockdown in provinces other than Sindh as having been caused by “pressure from the media.”
Addressing criticisms of the handling of the Taftan border quarantine, he noted that the Army and the Balochistan government had made great efforts to take care of pilgrims returning from Iran. Commenting on the management of the situation by Iranian authorities, he said that country had “brought our nationals to the border, leaving us no option but to allow them back into the country.”