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March 31, 2020

Schools closure due to coronavirus real test of nerves for parents

Peshawar

March 31, 2020

PESHAWAR: Though coronavirus pandemic has forced the authorities to lock down major cities, shut educational institutions and postpone annual examinations, the parents of children generally believe that the situation had put their nerves to a test.

Appreciating the government’s decision to close down educational institutions and postpone the examinations, the parents said it was the only way to protect the children. However, they said now the “examinations” of the parents have started as the children are at home instead of being in school. “This situation is totally different from the holidays in the past because we cannot go for picnic and have to stay home,” said one Munawwar Khan, whose eight grandsons and daughters have come to his house.

He said his grandchildren might have made the lives of their parents’ difficult as they live in small houses in the cities. But he said he enjoyed their company if they are too many of them around. “Yes, I agree. This is not isolation. I am sending my daughters’ children to their house today with the direction not to move out again,” he said, advising the parents to follow directives of the government to help prevent the spread of Covid-19. “Self-isolation and social distancing are the only means at this stage through which a person can protect and save himself and his family members,” he argued. “It will take time to accept these restrictions due to our open society, customs and traditions,” he added. “It is very difficult for parents to look after their children at home. We were not used to sitting at home. I now bicker with my wife over minor things,” said Inayat Khan, father of five children. “I help my wife cook the food and do other domestic chores and have come to realize that time hangs heavy when one stays at home.”

One Maulana Abdul Majeed asked the people to strictly follow the precautionary measures including washing hands with soap and sanitizers as these measures were necessary for their protection.

He pointed out that according to a hadith of Holy Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him), the people living in areas affected by an epidemic should stay there while those from outside should not move into that area.

“It means that people should adopt precautionary measures. One must not endanger his or her life by ignoring the instructions being given by the health experts and the government,” he added. One Fazil Khan, 55, asked the government to engage the religious scholars to convince the people to maintain social distancing and stay at home. He said the government should also use pamphlets, social media and FM channels to urge the people to adopt preventive measures in order to stay safe. However, he deplored that some people still loitered in bazaars and did not avoid attending social gatherings. “This is irresponsible behaviour as it poses risks to them as well as others,” he maintained.