Islamabad: Pakistan PM Imran Khan has tested positive for Covid within 48 hours of receiving his first shot of the novel coronavirus vaccine, his top health care aide Faisal Sultan said.
PM Narendra Modi of India was among the world leaders to send Khan get-well-soon messages. “Best wishes to Prime Minister @ImranKhanPTI for a speedy recovery from Covid-19,” he posted on Twitter.
Khan is self-isolating at home, Sultan said. Khan had got a shot of the Covid vaccine on Thursday. The 68-year-old is reported to have received the first shot of the Chinese-produced Sinopharm vaccine, the only anti-Covid jab available in Pakistan. It is likely he was infected prior to being inoculated, officials said.
Faisal Javed, a senator of Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), said the PM was experiencing mild symptoms and would continue to work from home. Khan has attended several meetings and public events in recent days. On Friday, he had visited Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, where he inaugurated a new academic block of Malakand University and addressed a gathering of students without wearing a mask.
Meanwhile, Khan urged people not to be deterred from getting vaccinated. Pakistan's vaccination roll-out has been met with widespread vaccine hesitancy, and Khan's positive test could serve as a setback to the mass inoculation drive in the country of 220 million people, health experts said.