Skip to main content

Balochistan is unprepared for the worst of COVID-19

Balochistan is unprepared for the worst of COVID-19
PakistanMuhammad Ejaz KhanMarch 30, 2020
As of March 30, there are 144 cases of the virus in the province, which is Pakistan’s poorest and most under-developed

Panic is setting in, as the number of coronavirus cases spike in Balochistan and the provincial government comes under heavy criticism for its handling of the pilgrims returning from Iran.

As of March 30, there are 144 cases of the virus in the province, which is Pakistan’s poorest and most under-developed.

For now, Balochistan has imposed a three-week “partial” lockdown to contain the spread of the infection. But the measure seems to be more of an afterthought - once the rest of the country shut down - rather than a preemptive decision.

The province has been in the international headlines a lot lately for how it bungled up the screening and testing of thousands of pilgrims, many of whom later tested positive.

Addressing a press conference on Sunday, Dr Zafar Mirza, the minister of state for health, announced that of the 1,527 confirmed patients of coronavirus, 58 per cent (around 857) had recently traveled to neighboring Iran. Further compounding the issue, a report in Arab News Pakistan revealed that over a hundred pilgrims have crossed into Balochistan from Iran, despite the closure of the Taftan border.

Read more: PM Imran's greatest fears about impact of coronavirus epidemic on poor may turn true

“The Balochistan government’s indecisive approach and the arrangements at Taftan had led to the spread of infections within the country,” Malik Sikandar Khan, the leader of the opposition in the provincial assembly, told over the phone.

A senior medical expert, who spoke to on the condition of anonymity, agreed.

“Had the government restricted movement from Iran, the number of cases in Pakistan would have been drastically less.”

Balochistan reported its first case of COVID-19 on March 10. Over the next few weeks, the cases multiplied to cross the 100. While, a death has also been recorded in the province.

The province’s health infrastructure is woefully underfunded and unprepared for the eventual flood of COVID-19 patients. Balochistan’s most populous city and its capital, Quetta, has less than 30 ventilators and 12 intensive care units (ICU) to cater to its one million plus population.

Kalat in the Gwadar area of the province has zero ventilators and perhaps only a few specialists who know what to do when the respiratory distress syndrome strikes.

For several years now, the people of the province have been traveling to Karachi or Lahore to avail medical facilities, due to lack of trust in the medical infrastructure of their own province. According to the Pakistan Bureau of Statistic’s 2018 report, there are only 132 public hospitals in the province.

Simply put, Balochistan is unprepared for the worst, which could be yet to come. If it wants to fight the looming storm of the pandemic, it will need more resources and manpower both in the major cities and on its border.

And hopefully, when this crisis is over, it would need to seriously think about a uplift of its healthcare system.


Popular posts from this blog

SSG Commando Muddassir Iqbal of Pakistan Army

“ Commando Muddassir Iqbal was part of the team who conducted Army Public School operation on 16 December 2014. In this video he reveals that he along with other commandos was ordered to kill the innocent children inside school, when asked why should they kill children after killing all the terrorist he was told that it would be a chance to defame Taliban and get nation on the side. He and all other commandos killed children and later Taliban was blamed.
Muddassir Iqbal has deserted the military and now he is  with mujahedeen somewhere in AF PAK border area”
For authenticity of  this tape journalists can easy reach to his home town to interview his family members or   ISPR as he reveals his army service number”
Asalam o Alaikum: My name is Muddassir Iqbal. My father’s name is Naimat Ali. I belong to Sialkot divison (Punjab province), my village is Shamsher Poor and district, tehsil and post office  Narowal. Unfortunately I was working in Pakistan army. I feel embarrassed to tell you …

CPEC Jobs in Pakistan, salary details

JOBS...نوکریاں چائنہ کمپنی میںPlease help the deserving persons...Salary:Salary package in China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) in these 300,000 jobs shall be on daily wages. The details of the daily wages are as follows;Welder: Rs. 1,700 dailyHeavy Duty Driver: Rs. 1,700 dailyMason: Rs. 1,500 dailyHelper: Rs. 850 dailyElectrician: Rs. 1,700 dailySurveyor: Rs. 2,500 dailySecurity Guard: Rs. 1,600 dailyBulldozer operator: Rs. 2,200 dailyConcrete mixer machine operator: Rs. 2,000 dailyRoller operator: Rs. 2,000 dailySteel fixer: Rs. 2,200 dailyIron Shuttering fixer: Rs. 1,800 dailyAccount clerk: Rs. 2,200 dailyCarpenter: Rs. 1,700 dailyLight duty driver: Rs. 1,700 dailyLabour: Rs. 900 dailyPara Engine mechanic: Rs. 1,700 dailyPipe fitter: Rs. 1,700 dailyStorekeeper: Rs. 1,700 dailyOffice boy: Rs. 1,200 dailyExcavator operator: Rs. 2,200 dailyShovel operator: Rs. 2,200 dailyComputer operator: Rs. 2,200 dailySecurity Supervisor: Rs. 2,200 dailyCook for Chinese food: Rs. 2,000 dailyCook…

Historical relationship between Kurd and Baloch.

The Kurds are the ethnical group living in a region known as Kurdistan which is divided into Iraq, Syria, Turkey and Iran. They  are struggling for an independent region since decades and they are famous for their female guerrilla fighters.        On 25 September 2017, the referendum for an independent Kurdish region  was held in Iraq with a turn out of 72 %.   On this important occasion, the historical relation between Kurd and Baloch people is worth discussing.       When it comes to history, every nation tends to find its roots and origin. Same goes with the Baloch people. The Baloch people are always curious  about  finding their roots in history. Even if you  talk to a shepherd in Balochistan, he will be curious to talk about his  tribal or ethnical roots.      The Balochs have always conveyed the history to the next generations in different mediums like poems etc. No Baloch before 20th century had written books on  history  or origin of the Baloch nation .