NCOC Guidelines for Mass Gatherings

The Government of Pakistan has established NCOC (National Command and Operation Centre) to synergize and articulate unified national effort against COVID-19, and to implement the decisions of National Coordination Committee on COVID-19. The center is one window operation to collate, analyze, and process information based on digital input and human intelligence across Pakistan through all provinces, AJ&K, GB & ICT Dedicated Representatives and Centers.

NCOC published guidelines for ‘Mass Gatherings During COVID-19’ on October 13, 2020. These guidelines can be accessed at the following link:

According to the guidelines:

Objective: To provide guidelines to the local authorities, organizers and participants of mass gatherings on planning and preparing for such events while ensuring minimum risk of COVID-19 transmission, that is known to be associated with mass gatherings.

The key points of the guidelines are as follows:

In-door gatherings

  • In in-door gathering, it is suggested to have maximum participation of not more than 500 persons where food is not served on the occasion, or 50% of seating capacity of the venue.
  • Strict compliance with face masks and hand sanitization is required, and it is suggested that the organizers provide face masks and hand sanitizers to all entrants of the event.

Out-door gatherings

  • For out-door gatherings, well defined locations must be chosen, the seating arrangement must be at least 3 feet apart with no one allowed to stand in-between the rows during the gathering.
  • Rallies and gathering on ill-defined venues such as streets and roads should be avoided.
  • The overall duration of events should be not more than 3 hours.
  • No handshaking and hugging is permitted.

Role of Organizers

  • Ensure the availability of thermal screening at entrance and allow individuals to enter in event only after checking their temperature.
  • Advise people to observe physical distancing, respiratory/cough etiquette, and hand hygiene practices.
  • Do not allow the individuals with cough and flu to enter the premises.

Role of Attendees/ Visitors

  • Ensure wearing a face mask before leaving house or at the venue.
  • Maintain the safe distance of 2 meters (6 feet) from each other indoors/ outdoors.
  • Use hand sanitizers frequently in the event/gathering.
  • Greet people at the entry with friendly words and smiles, rather than handshakes or other forms of physical contact.

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