Amid widespread confusion about localities selected for a smart lockdown and despite reported opposition from the health department, the Lahore district administration has locked down scores areas in the city.
Meanwhile, district administrations in six other major cities of Punjab geared up to impose lockdown in hotspot areas for the containment of the Covid-19 pandemic after the formal permission to do so was granted by the chief secretary during a meeting.
Chief Secretary Jawwad Rafique Malik issued orders regarding the implementation of the NCOC directives. There will be a lockdown in Lahore from Tuesday midnight and in other cities from Wednesday.
Throughout Monday and Tuesday, several lists of proposed places expected to be locked down kept taking rounds. However, as always, no one from government took the initiative of clearing the confusion. One of such an unconfirmed list was even aired by several electronic media outlets, however that too was overlooked by the authorities entrusted with task of looking after media affairs.
The notification for the lockdown, unlike the pervious notifications that were issued by the health department under the Punjab Infectious Disease Prevention and Control Ordinance 2020, was expected to be issued by the home department under Section 144 of CrPC.
The official said the policy of experimenting will only exhaust the people.
“Will the people in the sealed areas be allowed to go out to buy grocery and if not then how will they purchase necessary food items?” he asked. The purpose of lockdowns is to break the cycle of the virus, whereas this concept of smart lockdown does not break the cycle of virus in entirety, he said.
On the other hand, the Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department has extended the ongoing lockdown restrictions in the province till June 30.
The areas put sealed under the smart lockdown included Johar Town B2, F2, J2 and G3, Canal View Society B Block, Wapda Town F2 & G, PCSIR Phase 2 Block B, Gulberg A3,B2,B3 and B1, DHA Phase 1 all sectors, DHA Phase 5 All Sectors, Askari 10 Complete, Cavalary Ground (Shiraz Villas).