KARACHI: The Sindh government gave the go-ahead to allow cattle markets to be set up across the province, under strict compliance of COVID-19 SOPs.
The decision was taken by Chief Minister Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah after he chaired an important meeting pertaining to the establishment of cattle markets before Eid-ul-Azha.
The chief minister’s spokesperson said that the provincial government will ensure that organisers of the markets strictly adhere to the SOPs which will be issued by the provincial government.
CM Murad urged masses not to unnecessarily go to animal markets and directed the deputy commissioners to ensure people do not operate markets in streets and alleys. He said that children will not be allowed to go to the markets, in a bid to protect them from the coronavirus.
The chief minister directed authorities to allocate specific places where animals can be sacrificed. “If animals are slaughtered in streets everywhere, this will lead to the spread of diseases,” he said, directing authorities to establish designated places at the Union Council level.
It was decided that coronavirus testing will be conducted by mobile teams at the cattle market. The meeting agreed on increasing testing for the virus in COVID-19 hotspots.
NCOC formulates SOPs for 700 cattle markets across country
The National Command and Operations Centre (NCOC) had formulated the Standard Operating Procedures on Monday regarding the cattle markets and smart lockdown in several places of the country ahead of Eid-ul-Azha.
In a meeting presided by NCOC chairman Asad Umar, the session was briefed that the plan for congregational prayers will be the same as of Eid-ul-Fitr.
Chief Minister Punjab Usman Buzdar, provincial Health Minister Yasmin Rashid, and Punjab Law Minister Raja Basharat had also attended the session, along with other provincial representatives.
The forum was told that around 700 cattle markets will be functioning across Pakistan at the eve of Eid-ul-Azha, for which necessary guidelines have been forwarded.
Umar had said that cattle markets will be set up outside cities and a layout of these will be shared with everyone so health protocols and guidelines can be followed.
SOPs for cattle markets
The NCOC chairman said that the local administrations should ensure that the cattle markets operate from 6am to 7pm.
Among other guidelines, it was decided that the screening of those entering the markets is mandatory.
People will be asked to ensure they are wearing face masks and practicing social distancing. The officials will be asked to ensure that only a designated number of people will be allowed inside at one time to avoid over-crowding.