Prime Minister Imran Khan has ordered a crackdown against the hoarding of surgical masks across the country amid panic over the coronavirus outbreak.
Strict action should be taken against all manufacturers and sellers who are hoarding and selling surgical masks at higher prices, the prime minister said in his notice.
More than 50,000 masks were seized by authorities during a raid on a factory in Rawalpindi. According to an official, the factory has been ordered to supply 20,000 masks in the market daily. “They have also been obliged to sell a packet of masks for Rs600,” he said.
The factory owner was initially selling a single pack for Rs2,000.
In another raid on a shop in Islamabad’s A-11, a man was arrested for selling overpriced masks. He was selling a Rs10 mask for Rs120.
PM Khan has also ordered governments of all provinces to ensure that hoarders are being arrested and masks are sold in public at their actual rates.