Punjab Police on Tuesday put Raiwind city put under quarantine and shut down all general and medical stores, while no one is being allowed to leave their homes. Even now more than 2,200 people of the tableeghi jamaat are present in the gathering, police said. Adjacent to Raiwind city is a tableeghi mosque where it was suspected that 50 people have contracted the virus. Upon screening it was discovered that 27 do have the virus. Many people have either been shifted to the Kala Shah Kaku quarantine facility or a quarantine facility in Kasur. A team of doctors is currently continuing testing of people to ascertain whether there are more people infected. Meanwhile, Sindh Inspector General Mushtaq Ahmed Mahar in a notification issued on Tuesday instructed all police officers to ensure that tableeghi jamaat members across the province remain in the Jamaat marakiz (centres) and to consider all such marakiz as quarantine centres. The development comes after 36 people tested positive for the coronavirus in Hyderabad’s Noor Mosque, where some 200 Jamaat members were initially quarantined. They had returned from the tableeghi jamaat congregation in Raiwind – comprising tens of thousands of people – held from March 11 to 15 near Lahore. According to the notification, the number of cases was increasing and there was concern that there might be a further increase if adequate preparations to control COVID-19’s spread were not made. The notification also directed police officers to ensure that no person entered or left the premises of the centres. It also directed the superintendents (SPs) of each district to cooperate with the district commissioners (DCs) and health officers and provide rations and necessary items to the centres. It further directed the police officers to make lists of all the tableeghi jamaat marakiz in their areas and the people inside and trace all the members outside, and to send their data to the operations room of the Inspector General of Police. A total of 830 persons belonging to the tableeghi jamaat are currently in the Hyderabad range. “Of these 830, 234 belong to Hyderabad’s Noor Mosque,” said Hyderabad range DIG Naeem Shaikh. Noor Mosque is the second largest centre of the Jamaat in Sindh after the one in Karachi. It was sealed on Friday after a 19-year-old Chinese-origin tableeghi jamaat member tested positive for COVID-19. The Islamabad administration last week placed the capital’s union council of Kot Hathial under quarantine after six members of the tableeghi jamaat residing in the area tested positive for coronavirus. Over in Multan, a member of tableeghi jamaat from China, who was shifted to quarantine centre in Multan, faintex on Tuesday and was rushed to the Nishter Hospital’s isolation ward. According to details, Chinese citizen along with tableeghi jamaat reached Multan as the doctor said that he was out of danger and he got fainted due to malnutrition during eight hours of journey. It is worth mentioning that over 391 tableeghi jammat members including foreigners reached Multan and the Abdali mosque, where they are residing, turned into quarantine. Moreover, as many as 303 members of tableeghi jamaat were brought here Tuesday but there was no huge place to keep them isolated. Finally they were shifted to Tableeghi Markaz. The district administration and health department authorities were in a fix whether to shift them to other nearby districts, credible sources revealed to this Scribe. The Quarantine Centre established at Areeja Campus of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Medical University (SMBBMU) is already housing 83 pilgrims who had returned from Iran and seven out of whom were tested COVID-19 positive, sources added. All of them are under treatment and observation at that Centre. These sources further disclosed that there are even no large number of kits to get their (tableeghi jamaat members) swabs and send them for testing to GIMS Khairpur or Karachi. Till filing of this report the administration was unable to decide what to do. Sources added that these new people have been kept at Tableeghi Markaz located on Kambar Road under tight security and it is yet to be decided what to do, whether to shift them to other districts having more capacity to keep them or to keep them at the same place for testing and further examination as per guidelines. Meanwhile, four doctors posted to work at the SMBBMU Quarantine Centre and Chandka Hospital Isolation Ward have been advised by the deputy commissioner to get themselves tested as a precautionary measure in their interest. Many people living in rural villages and towns complained to newsmen that people of tableeghi jamaat are also hiding in their towns and several other villages and they must be shifted for testing so that residents could be saved from infection. Apart from it, a list of 688 persons is also circulating on social media since March 25 in which it has been claimed that these people have also returned from abroad but they are constantly hiding in their houses or at the residences of their friends and relatives. Citizens have been asked to help the district administration to track them down for their examination and COVID-19 testing. On the other hand, complete lockdown was observed in the entire district except rural and remote areas and villages where people continued their traditional joint sessions ignoring health advisories. On the other hand, Foreign Office Spokesperson Aisha Farooqui on Tuesday said that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs was responsible for allowing pilgrims from Iran to enter the country. In a statement issued on Tuesday, she said that facilities were being improved by Pakistan at the Taftan border, adding that the thousands of pilgrims were facilitated after the coronavirus outbreak in the Iranian city of Qom. The spokesperson said that the Pak-Iran border is closed, but it is our responsibility to allow our citizens to enter Pakistan, adding that Islamabad and Tehran is working with joint consultation on the issue of pilgrims. “Pakistani government and embassy are in touch with Iranian government on pilgrims issue,” Farooqui added.