KARACHI: Ignoring the latest coronavirus curbs — which includes a ban on jalsas — announced by PM Imran Khan, the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) announced to go ahead with its November 22 rally in Peshawar.
"The PDM's November 22 rally in Peshawar will be held as per schedule," the media coordinator for the Opposition parties' coalition, Abdul Jalil Jan, said Monday.
Jan stressed that the PDM's high command had already decided to hold all the meetings. "We will not allow the rulers to hide behind the coronavirus pandemic," he said.
Earlier today, PM Imran Khan had urged the nation to follow coronavirus-related standard operating procedures (SOPs), warning that authorities have observed that infections in Pakistan have quadrupled over the past 10 days.
In an address after a meeting of the National Coordination Committee (NCC) on coronavirus, the premier had announced a moratorium on political rallies and gatherings, as well as a ban on gatherings and crowds of more than 300 people.
"We reviewed the rising cases of the COVID-19 and the second wave," he had said, warning that infections in the entire world, especially Europe and America, were rising rapidly.
PTI cancels weekend rally
Urging not to engage in activities that attract crowds, he had announced cancelling the ruling PTI's rally in Rashakai coming Saturday. "We have scrapped our rallies and we'll urge everyone else to do the same because that's the one place where the virus spreads the fastest.
"The chief minister of Gilgit-Baltistan told us that the coronavirus spread significantly after the election campaigns," he had said.
The premier had said his government feared that not following SOPs would lead to the same pressure building on hospitals as was seen back in June.
"The first precaution is to wear face masks wherever you go in public and, secondly, we know that the COVID-19 pandemic spreads whenever people are close together and the more the number of people are close together, the quicker it spreads," PM Imran Khan had said.
The coronavirus pandemic was "a test for our country and for the entire world", he had added.