ISLAMABAD: A day after extending a ban on international and domestic air travel, the federal government on Friday decided to allow private airlines to resume operations within the country “subject to compliance with relevant Standard Operating Procedures”.
According to a notification by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), the private airlines will be allowed to operate “only subject to compliance with relevant Standard Operating Procedures”. “The suspension of International and Domestic Operations as effected vide earlier orders along-with relevant provisions therein will remain unchanged,” stated the notification.
These airlines will operate between three cities– Karachi, Islamabad, and Lahore.
Earlier in the day, Prime Minister’s Special Assistant on National Security Division Dr Moeed Yusuf said that the government has decided to restore private flight operations within the country.
He expressed these views during a media briefing here along with Prime Minister’s Special Assistant on National Health Services Dr Zafar Mirza.
Moeed said the government is chalking out a mechanism to bring back Pakistanis stranded in coronavirus-hit Afghanistan and added that at least 2,000 Pakistani nationals stranded in different countries, including Saudi Arabia, UAE, Indonesia and Thailand, will be brought back within the next few days.
Moeed also said that Pakistan decided to send aid in the form of medicine and food to Afghanistan on humanitarian ground.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Zafar Mirza has dispelled the impression that coronavirus cannot affect the young people. He informed that over 4,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus cases in Pakistan are less than 50 years of age, which is alarming.
Talking about overall coronavirus cases in Pakistan, Mirza informed that overall 4,601 positive cases of coronavirus have emerged in the country with 107 in Islamabad, 2,279 in Punjab, 1,128 in Sindh, 620 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 219 in Balochistan, 33 in Azad Jammu and Kashmir and 215 in Gilgit-Baltistan.
The special assistant further said that 727 patients have recovered so far, 66 patients have died, while 45 are in critical condition.