Iftikhar Khan

PESHAWAR: Peshawar has become the worst hit city from coronavirus in Pakistan by reporting 66 percent deaths of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and 22 percent deaths of the country.

So far, 32,916 people have been infected from coronavirus in Pakistan and 733 deaths have been reported. Ten more deaths were reported in KP during the last 24 hours after which the total death toll in the province mounted to 267. The overall death percentage of COVID-19 patients in Pakistan is about 2 percent, but in KP it is about 5 percent and in Peshawar it is 7 percent which is an alarming sign for the provincial metropolis.

Peshawar has the highest cases in KP (1,975) with 160 deaths, while Swat and Mardan are the second and third most affected districts with 385 and 277 cases respectively.

Peshawar has so far reported about 40 percent of the confirmed cases in KP, while 60 percent deaths have also been reported from the provincial capital.

The countrywide death toll from the virus is 733 at present where the share of Peshawar is 22 percent.

Karachi has so far reported most cases of COVID-19 (9,082), followed by Lahore with 4,637 cases. The high proportion of positive cases in Karachi and Lahore is understood as these are two largest cities of the country, but in Peshawar, which has 2 percent population of the country, has reported 6 percent cases of the country.

KP Health Minister Taimur Saleem Jhagra says virus has spread with a rapid pace in Peshawar as more people from abroad came to the city.

Dr Gulab Noor of the Lady Reading Hospital in Peshawar also agrees with the theory of the health minister, saying that about 500,000 people from gulf countries have returned to KP after the outbreak of coronavirus pandemic. Dr Gulab told TNN that the negligence of the federal and provincial governments is the top reason why the virus is spreading so quickly. He said the government instead of doing politics on the issue should have formed a committee of senior doctors to tackle the issue. He said safety equipment according to WHO standards could not be provided to hospitals even four months after the outbreak of the pandemic due to which a large number of doctors and other health staff members have also been infected.

Dr Gulab said many people in Peshawar are still in denial mode and they don’t go for tests even after developing symptoms and spread the disease by not adopting precautionary measures. He said patients from different parts of KP are brought to Peshawar which is also a reason behind the spread of the virus. He said stricter lockdown and precaution is the only answer to COVID-19 in the current circumstances.