First Pakistani Lawmaker Who Was Tested Positive for Coronavirus Has Died

LAHORE, Pakistan — Pakistan’s first lawmaker who was tested positive for coronavirus has died at a hospital in the eastern city of Lahore.

According to doctors and her Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf ruling party, Shaheen Raza, 69, was hospitalized three days ago. Her condition deteriorated Wednesday and she died at a government hospital. Pakistan’s prime minister Imran Khan expressed his grief and sorry of the death of his party’s senior lawmaker.

Usman Buzdar, the chief minister in the Punjab province, confirmed her death from coronavirus. She was a lawmaker at the provincial Punjab Assembly.

The announcement about Raza’s death comes as the poverty-stricken Pakistan recorded its highest single-day deaths from COVID-19, with 46 in the last 24 hours. The virus has so far infected several politicians, including Pakistan’s speaker of lower house of parliament Asad Qaiser who has fully recovered.

As of Wednesday, there were nearly 46,000 confirmed cases of the virus, including almost 1,000 fatalities, in Pakistan, where authorities eased six-week long lockdown last week despite warnings from some doctors that the lifting of restrictions can cause a sudden spike in deaths and infections.

Pakistan has also reopened shopping malls on a court order and authorities Wednesday resumed a train service, saying the measures were aimed at reviving the economy and saving people from dying because of hunger and poverty.

Authorities say most of the people in Pakistan are not adhering to social distancing guidelines.


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