ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: With the growing number of Coronavirus affectees around the globe and the emergence of two cases in Pakistan, the majority of the people have been intimidated and are rushing towards Medical Stores in a panic to buy safety masks.
However, the people suffered disappointment over the shortage of masks in Medical Stores and Chemist Shops in Islamabad. If some of them managed to find the safety masks but were left astonished and baffled over the prices.
The hoarders and profiteers initially acquired the masks from the market and hoarded them, and then sold them at high prices as their demand increased following the artificial shortage.
Islamabad hospitals have bought more than 26,000 safety masks from Chemist Shops
In order to ensure that safety masks are available to the people, the Deputy Commissioner (DC) Islamabad Muhammad Hamza Shafqaat on Thursday issued directives for all shopkeepers and vendors of the Federal Capital asking them not to indulge in any malpractice of hoarding and profiteering of masks.
In a tweet on Friday, the DC Islamabad told when a citizen sought his attention towards the disappearance of masks from the Federal Capital that all hospitals in Islamabad have bought more than 26,000 masks from Chemist Shops to protect health workers as they are the first ones to get in touch with patients.
“We are arranging for more (safety masks). In Shah Allah issue will be resolved,” he said.
Meanwhile, on the directives of the Inspector General of Police (IG) Islamabad Muhammad Aamir Zulfiqar, the Islamabad police has initiated the checking process of different Medical Stores to prevent the black marketing of masks.
آئی جی اسلام آباد محمد عامر ذوالفقار خان کے احکامات پر عمل درآمد شروع۔
وفاقی پولیس نے ماسک کی بلیک مارکیٹنگ کی روک تھام کے لئے انتظامیہ کے احکامات پر عمل در آمد کو یقینی بنانے کے لیے مخلتف میڈیکل سٹور پر چیکنگ کا عمل شروع کردیا گیا۔#CoronaVirusUpdates #CoronavirusOutbreak pic.twitter.com/stGEV73R5P
— Islamabad Police (@ICT_Police) February 27, 2020
Earlier on Thursday, the Islamabad police arrested a vendor for selling masks worth Rs 5 each for Rs 120.
Separately, in a bid to fill the shortage of masks in the adjoining Rawalpindi City, the production of masks has begun under the supervision of the City Magistrate.
In a statement, the Deputy Commissioner (DC) Rawalpindi Captain (retd) Anwar Ul Haq said that the masks will be distributed after the production of a sufficient quantity.
— Deputy Commissioner Rawalpindi (@DCRawalpindi) February 28, 2020