Islamabad, Apr 27 (PTI) Pakistan has postponed all the school and university examinations until mid-June as the country faced a grim situation due to the continuous rise in new coronavirus cases, Education Minister Shafqat Mehmood said on Tuesday.
Addressing the media with advisor on health affairs, Dr Faisal Sultan, after a meeting of the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC), Mehmood said the country is concerned with the speed with which the COVID-19 infections are spreading across the country despite measures being taken.
“All local examinations conducted by various secondary and higher secondary boards and universities would now be held after June 15 due to the volatile situation in the country caused by the coronavirus,” Mehmood said.
Mehmood said a meeting of the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) would be convened in the third week of May to finalise the dates for local exams but warned of more delays if the coronavirus situation didn’t improve.
The decision came as 142 people died in the last 24 hours, taking the COVID-19 death toll to 17,329.
Another 4,487 new cases emerged in this period, pushing the national tally of cases to 804,939, according to the Ministry of National Health Services.
The positivity rate was 10.2 per cent which was considered as high.
Meanwhile, Dr Sultan said a special committee of the NCOC was monitoring the oxygen situation in the country and trying to improve it.
'Existing oxygen plants are being monitored and we are looking at additional plants,” he said.
Separately, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry said that Pakistan would import oxygen from China and Iran in case of drastic shortages.
Also, the Ministry of Interior after the meeting of the NCOC imposed fresh restrictions across the country, including a complete ban on tourism from May 8-16.
“Closure of tourist resorts, public parks and hotels in/around tourist spots to remain closed,' it said.
The ministry said all public parks, hotels, restaurants, shopping malls and transport will also remain closed for the public during this period (May 8-16). PTI SH RUP RUP RUP