Copy of 2020-04-03T113924Z_244700409_RC2ZWF9Q6H8L_RTRMADP_3_HEALTH-CORONAVIRUS-SOUTHASIA-1585990208520
A traffic police officer walks past barriers used to block the road in front of the British era Empress Market building, during a lockdown after Pakistan shut all markets, public places and discouraged large gatherings amid an outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Karachi, April 3. Image Credit: REUTERS

Islamabad: The World Bank has given Pakistan $200 million in aid to help the most vulnerable as the country deals with the coronavirus pandemic with a lockdown that Prime Minister Imran Khan says will continue until April 14. The money will be used to provide social protection measures, as well as food for the poorest and education supplies for the millions of children out of school.

he tally of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Pakistan rose to 2,708 on Saturday after new infections were confirmed in the country, health officials said. The national dashboard, maintained by the federal ministry of health says that the death toll has increased to a total of 40 while 13 patients are in critical condition, ARY News reported.

Most of the confirmed cases of COVID-19 are in Pakistan’s southern Sindh province and are traced to pilgrims returning from Iran, with more than 58,000 confirmed cases and more than 3,200 deaths.

Khan has been criticised for not moving quicker, particularly in stopping a world-wide gathering of Tableeghi Jamaat (Islamic missionaries) to Pakistan, that was eventually cancelled in mid-March, weeks after the virulent nature of the epidemic was known and tens of thousands had already gathered in Pakistan.

The latest statistics of the national dashboard say that 130 patients have recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic thus far.

Sindh has recorded the most number of deaths since the first case emerged, the current tally of those that succumbed to the virus from each province puts Sindh at the top of the list with 14 deaths, Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa share 11 deaths each while Gilgit-Baltistan has recorded three deaths thus far.

Balochistan province has also recorded one death due to the novel coronavirus.

Punjab has the highest figure of infections in the province-wise tally with 1072 cases, whereas, 839 in Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) 343, Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) 193, Balochistan 175, Islamabad 68 and Pakistan administered Kashmir 11.

The country recorded 258 new cases within the last 24 hours.