Pro boxing organizers breach Covid-19 SOPs

ISLAMABAD: The organizers allowed around 2,000 audience to gather regardless of repeated requests made by the government to follow SOPs to avoid danger concerned in close contact Blatant violations of the government’s Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for Covid-19 were seen through the professional boxing event in Islamabad.

There were tiring masks and no one bothered to keep a safe distance from others the event was free for all and only five% of the people present. The throng used to drink water from one glass and rejoice while hugging each other. A safe reserve from others even the organizers were not using sanitizers and keeping.

The audience at boxing event was giving feeling as if the corona virus was a history now Saturday witnessed the highest number of positive cases in double cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad during the last two months.

Local sports inscribe said, “I was only there to perform my professional duties. However, when inside the hall I witnessed that spectators were not following the SOPs I preferred to stay out in the open rather risking my health.”

The department had given free hand to professional boxing organizers as even Test captain Azhar Ali and boxer Amir Khan seen sitting side by side without wearing any mask there was no regulation at the event.

He said the board had nothing to do with this event when an official of the Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) loomed.

“We had provided this facility to Amir Khan to hold training camps and establish his academy. The event organizers did not get any permission from the PSB to hold the international competition at the facility. We came to know about the plan a couple of days ahead of the event when the foreign boxers had already reached Pakistan to feature in the competition,” the official said.

The official said he was talking about the official permission when asked that a PSB’s just issued handout backed the event.

“There is a process for holding such events. To get permission for organizing such an event, an application must reach the PSB headquarters six weeks prior to start of the event. After that, we forward it to the concerned departments in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as well as Ministry for IPC. No such application was received from the organizers and we had no other option but to recognize the event when all the foreign boxers had reached here.”

The PSB official expressed his anxiety about the violations of the SOPs at the Amir Khan Complex.

The official added, “A few months back we were forced to close the complex for one month because of the positive cases following a gathering there.”

The event’s organizer was unwilling to come out with their point of view. Amir’s manager Muhammad Anwar did not attend the call and even did not react to a message sent through WhatsApp in an attempt to know that was accountable for ignoring SOPs at the event.

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