A Pakistani volunteer
A Pakistani volunteer takes the temperature of a young spectator outside the National Stadium in Karachi, Pakistan, Thursday, March 12, 2020/file photo. Image Credit: AP

Dubai: Coronavirus cases in Pakistan has risen to 136 on Monday after the Sindh Provincial authorities confirmed 83 new cases.

Sindh is now the worst-hit province in Pakistan with 88 out of 136  total coronavirus cases reported until Monday afternoon.  This is the single largest increase in novel coronavirus cases in the country as of today.

Some 68 new cases were reported in Sindh on Monday while Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) reported 15 cases pushing the number from 53 to 136 Monday.

KP health minister Taimur Saleem Jhagra tweeted that 15 out of 19 received in the province from Taftan have tested positive for the virus

Murtaza Wahab, Advisor to Sindh Chief Minister on Law, Anti-Corruption Establishment, and Information, tweeted on Monday that 50 people who returned from the quarantine at Taftan border with Iran had tested positive for COVID-19.

Out of the confirmed cases, 25 are in Karachi and one is in Hyderabad. “Out of these 76 patients, 2 have recovered and the remaining 74 are being kept in isolation,” he added.

On Sunday, 20 were cases were confirmed by the authorities with Punjab reporting its first confirmed patient. Sindh confirmed 18 new cases while Islamabad reported one, reported the Express Tribune.

As of now, there are 76 confirmed cases in Sindh, 10 Balochistan, three in Gilgit Baltistan, four in Islamabad and one in Punjab.

Out of the 18 cases reported in Sindh on Saturday, 13 were of those quarantined in Sukkur. Three out of the remaining five had recently returned from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, one travelled from Balochistan and the fifth patient had no travel history.

Imran orders emergency measures

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran Khan has ordered completion of emergency measures to combat coronavirus. The National Coordination Committee on the Coronavirus is also going to consider closing off Sindh from the rest of Pakistan by sealing its interprovincial borders due to massive increase in coronavirus cases in Sindh.

“All decisions taken [in this meeting] have to be implemented without exception. The nation needs to be updated and informed regarding the coronavirus on a daily basis. We need to fight the coronavirus, not be scared by it,” he added.

Task force

Also, a coronavirus task force has been formed by the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP)government with the provincial chief minister in the chair. The KP government has already initiated an awareness drive for the disease. Seventy buildings have also been identified to be turned into quarantine centers.

Civil Aviation Authority on Monday issued fresh instructions to control the issue of overcrowding at the airports. Under the new directives, non-essential persons will not be allowed to enter domestic and international arrival lounges.