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No lockdown to be imposed despite increasing COVID-19 in country

Schools will not be closed due to the increasing coronavirus ratio across the country 

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No lockdown to be imposed despite increasing COVID-19 in country
GNN Media: Representational Photo

Islamabad: Minister for Information Fawad Chaudhry said that no lockdown will be imposed despite increasing the cases of coronavirus in the country. 

The information minister said while briefing the journalists about the decisions of the federal cabinet on Tuesday. 

The minister said that the cabinet was also briefed about COVID situation in the country. He said it has been decided that no lockdown will be imposed in the country as Pakistan's economy cannot afford this. He appealed the people to observe precautionary measures, especially wearing of face masks at public places, to prevent spread of the virus. He said the government will keep monitoring the situation.

Fawad Chaudhry further said that schools will not be closed due to the coronavirus, the vaccination campaign is going well in the country while people should use masks.

Murree Tragedy

Fawad Chaudhry said that 22 people were killed in the Murree tragedy. “Many trees fell on the road and blocked the roads due to severe snow falling. Most of the people left their vehicles and went on foot.”

He said that due to road blockade, it was difficult for the machinery to reach the area. “Due to heavy snowfall, helicopters could not reach the spot. Many people fell asleep after running heaters in their vehicles. The people were dead cause of Carbon Monoxide generated due to heaters. The premier expressed his sorrow over the tragedy,” he added. 

Fawad Chaudhry said that the provincial government and local administration need to be prepared for domestic tourism in Pakistan, the system of managing tourism is getting old. “PTI introduced tourism as a sector, 13 new tourists Places are being built, not a single new tourist destination has been built in 70 years, there is a lot of potential in the tourism industry, or tourism can become strong base of economics.”

The minister further said that the Punjab government has formed an inquiry committee which will give report within seven days. All the institutions have played an excellent role in the rescue and relief operation. 

Faisal Waqas

Faisal Waqas is a passionate journalist who has eight years of diversified experience in print, electronic and digital media. He has previously worked with other renowned private TV channels as well as English Newspaper and now associated with GNN as Senior Content Writer. Faisal has graduated from the University of Punjab and earned his M.Phil degree in Mass Communication from Superior University of Lahore.

Pakistan

‘If I come out on streets, you would not even find place to hide’, PM warns opposition

Imran Khan says people asked him why he did not shake hands with Opposition Leader Shehbaz Sharif

Published by Faisal Waqas

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‘If I come out on streets, you would not even find place to hide’, PM warns opposition

+Islamabad: Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan on Sunday warned the opposition and said that if he comes out on the streets, they would not even find a place to hide.

The prime minister said while receiving direct phone calls from the general public and answered their questions and complaints in a live programme “Aap ka Wazir-e-Azam, Aap ke Saath” on Sunday.

“I want to warn you that if I am forced out of the office, I would be more dangerous. If I come out on the streets, you would not even find a place to hide,” the prime minister said to the opposition. 

Shebaz Sharif a criminal, not opposition leader

Criticising Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shahbaz Sharif. 

Imran Khan said that he is ready to talk to everyone — even if their views differ from his — but he is never going to negotiate with the corrupt. "If I talk with the corrupt and give them NROs, then I will be deceiving the nation as well as my Allah," he added. 

He said that he wanted to go to parliament and wanted to answer the people’s questions. But he could not answer the questions because of the ruckus the opposition created in the house.

He said that he never claimed that the government would dig out milk canals in the country. He said the criticizers should criticize government but they should also inform the public about things that are beneficial for the country. 

He said that people asked him why he did not shake hands with Opposition Leader Shehbaz Sharif. He said that he did not consider Shehbaz as Opposition leader, rather he regarded him as ‘criminal of the nation’. He said Shehbaz read out speeches of long durations in the assembly. They seem more like a job application than a political speech, the PM mockingly said. 

Entered politics to crusade dacoits

The prime minister said that he entered politics to launch a crusade against ‘dacoits’. He also lamented that former foreign minister Ishaq Dar had fled the country during the PML-N tenure. 

Imran deplored that the FBR brought Rs2,500 billion cases to the courts but three regulators informed him that the mafia got stay order from courts. 

Rising inflation wakes me up at nights

Imran Khan has said that he could not sleep at night while thinking about rising inflation. When a woman caller asked the premier that since inflation has increased manifold ‘now should we be worried a bit’? 

The premier replied that he too was worried about inflation and this thing gives him sleepless nights.

Inflation not an issue confined to Pakistan

At the beginning of the session, the premier said that it was his faith that the PTI government will aspire to work on the reasons Pakistan was built: an Islamic Welfare State.

"The biggest challenge we face today is inflation and the rising prices of commodities. I am well aware and cognisant of the issues being faced by the common man due to rising prices.” He then said that inflation is "not an issue occurring solely in Pakistan."

"I want my countrymen to understand that inflation is a global phenomenon caused due to the COVID-19 pandemic," he said. “From industrialised countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, to Europe and Japan, the entire world is faced with spiralling costs of living, a sharp increase in food prices, and a huge spike in energy prices.” 

“Pandemics such as COVID-19 occur once in 100 years, it has had a global negative effect causing spiralling costs of living, and disrupting lives all across the world.” 

Will ask businessmen to raise salaries 

The prime minister said that the salaried class remains the most affected by the pandemic and he would invite top businessmen and ask them to raise the salaries of their staffers.

'Country progressing despite COVID-19'

Citing the 5.37% Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth of the country despite the prevalence of the pandemic, the premier questioned the Opposition, the critics, and the media as to how the country is progressing if there was complete economic turmoil.

"The construction sector is booming in the country and banks have received applications for housing loans worth Rs290 billion, while the government has already granted Rs140 billion to the applicants, which shows the public's trust in the government's policies."

He said that 45,000 housing units are under construction, while the private sector and building developers are constructing three million houses in their 342 projects. 

"Thirty industries are directly linked with the construction sector and are getting benefit of this boom," the premier said.

PM asks media to refrain from fake news

Addressing the media of the country, the premier said that while it is the right of the media to criticise the government so that it could improve, it should refrain from resorting to propaganda and fake news. "Our government is against mafias, and unfortunately, some elements within the media have also sided with them to spread negativity," he said. 

To pay taxes 

To a question about high taxes on imported mobile phones, the prime minister said that his government is trying to manufacture everything within the country, saying that manufacturing goods within the country is the only solution as importing goods from abroad is very expensive. "Even the clothes I am wearing are made in Pakistan. I don't wear anything imported," the premier said, adding that the government is trying to document the economy so that tax collection could be increased.

"If we want to be a progressing nation, we have to pay taxes," he said.

The prime minister said that the PTI government will not only complete this tenure but it will also complete the next term. 

Live calls session

Prior to taking the calls, the Prime Minister's Office had provided a landline number for citizens wanting to talk directly to the premier. They may dial 051-9224900.

The announcement for the live call session was made through the official Twitter account of the Prime Minister's Office on Saturday.

The prime minister has regularly been taking live calls from people and answering their queries. However, this session is being conducted after a short gap.

Sunday's session was the seventh time PM Imran Khan interacted with the public. The last live session by the premier was held last year on August 29.

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Pakistan

Security forces recover large cache of weapons, ammunition in South Waziristan IBO: ISPR

Security forces conducted the operation after receiving information

Published by Siddra Sumreen

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Security forces recover large cache of weapons, ammunition in South Waziristan IBO: ISPR

Rawalpindi: Security forces have conducted an Intelligence Based Operation in Serwekai area in South Waziristan, ISPR reported on Sunday.

In a statement, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said security forces conducted the operation after receiving information that terrorists were present in a hideout in the area.

According to ISPR, a large quantity of weapons, ammunition and improvised explosive device (IED) preparation material was recovered from the hideout.

The recovered cache of weapons, includes sub-machine guns, RPG-7, hand grenades and large quantity of ammunition of multiple calibers, the ISPR added.

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Pakistan

Global pandemic hits world economies, Pakistan no exception: PM Imran Khan

PM Office provides landline number for citizens wanting to talk directly to premier. 

Published by Siddra Sumreen

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Global pandemic hits world economies, Pakistan no exception: PM Imran Khan

Islamabad: Prime Minister Imran Khan Sunday said that the global inflation and price hike of commodities triggered by sharp disruption in the supply and demand chain, due to Covid 19 pandemic, had affected all the countries of the world alike including Pakistan.

In a fifth session of “Aap Ka Wazir Azam Aap Key Sath’ programme, the prime minister said that post-Covid scenario sent the prices of vital commodities skyrocketing and Pakistan was not the only country in the world to bear the brunt of imported global price hike.

According to PM Office Media Wing, the prime minister had held four such like live Tv sessions with the public last year. About 86 questions, 74 on telephone calls and 12 others via social media, were responded by the prime minister during these sessions.

The callers had raised different issues pertaining to corruption, land grabbing, inflation, coronavirus, Riyasat-i-Madina, etc., besides giving certain suggestions.

The highest participation in these sessions was made by the callers from Punjab province followed by Islamabad Capital Territory, Sindh and KPK. About 11 percent among these participants were overseas Pakistanis.

Major redressal of the public grievances included inheritance share of land as raised by a resident of Kohat, improvement of traffic system in Lahore, construction of RHC at a land donated by a resident of Sarai Alamgir for which the government of Punjab had allocated Rs30 million for the proposed scheme, waterlogging issue due to Gojra main drain in Faisalabad, stone crushing pollution issue at Ghora Gali, etc road, corruption in the utility store, passport issue at Pakistan embassy in Germany and initiation of criminal proceedings related to encroached land of an overseas Pakistani.

Issuance of prompt directions and resolution of their grievances by the prime minister had been widely appreciated by the participants who had also expressed their acknowledgment and gratitude to the prime minister.

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