'There are clear early signs of COVID-19's fourth wave starting': Asad Umar

ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) – Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives, Asad Umar said on Friday has said that there are clear early signs of COVID-19’s fourth wave starting.

In a post on social-networking website Twitter, the minister said, “2 weeks back I had tweeted that our artificial intelligence models are showing possible emergence of 4th wave. Now there are clear early signs of 4th wave starting.”

“Poor SOPs compliance, coupled with spread of variants of concern, Indian variant in particular, are the main cause,” he added.

Asad Umar saidy, “Field reports are showing complete disregard of the condition of vaccination for those attending indoor weddings and going to indoor restaurants and gyms.”

“If the owners of these facilities do not show responsibility and ensure compliance, there will be no choice but to shut them down,” he warned.  

The reaction came after Pakistan reported 25 deaths in the last 24 hours by novel coronavirus as the number of positive cases has surged to 969,476. The nationwide tally of fatalities has jumped to 22,520.

According to the latest figures by the National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) 1,737 persons tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 24 hours.

Punjab remains the worst-hit province in terms of deaths and cases followed by Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Till now 10,805 individuals have lost their lives to the epidemic in Punjab 5,566 in Sindh, 4,348 in KP, 782 in Islamabad, 591 in Azad Kashmir, 317 in Balochistan, and 111 in GB.

Furthermore 347,553 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Punjab, 344,223 in Sindh, 139,008 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 83,400 in Islamabad, 27,781 in Balochistan, 20,811 in Azad Kashmir and 6,700 in Gilgit-Baltistan.

Pakistan has so far conducted 14,960,221 coronavirus tests and 47,528 in the last 24 hours. 911,383 patients have recovered in the country whereas 1,971 patients are in critical condition.