ISLAMABAD: Chairing a meeting of the federal cabinet, Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday issued directives for strict implementation of the government-defined standard operating procedures (SOPs) for cattle markets to curb spread of coronavirus during Eidul Azha.

The cabinet that met with Premier Khan in the chair took stock of the country’s overall political and economic situation. It also deliberated upon the SOPs to mitigate the risk of a possible spike in Covid-19 cases during the upcoming Eid.

The federal cabinet expressed satisfaction over a drop in the number of coronavirus cases in the country.

Well-placed sources quoted members of the cabinet as saying that the coronavirus has not yet been eliminated completely and stressed the need for strict adherence to precautions to keep the virus at bay.

The premier called for citizens to be careful on the occasion of Eidul Azha to avoid virus spread.

The cabinet also took up the issue of unannounced load shedding by K-Electric in Karachi and referred the matter to the cabinet’s energy committee. Prime Minister Khan will preside over a meeting to get a briefing on the issue after two days.

Railways Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed demanded that hotels be allowed to reopen under the SOPs, stating that they are a source of livelihood for the have-nots who have been suffering due to their closure.

The prime minister tasked Federal Planning and Development Minister Asad Umar to make a decision on reopening of hotels.

Lyari gang war leader Uzair Baloch’s JIT also came under discussion during the meeting when Minister for Maritime Affairs Ali Zaidi gave a briefing to the cabinet in this regard.