LAHORE:Caretaker Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi has directed the authorities concerned to turn the urban roads dust-free for the eradication of smog in the provincial capital.
The decision was taken in a meeting held here Sunday. The CM said the roads would be washed for the prevention of smog and for this he assigned LWMC to wash the City roads while Deputy Commissioners have been directed to launch a crackdown on those involved in selling substandard fuel.
Before departure for China, a special meeting was held at CM’s Office under the chair of Caretaker chief minister to review steps being taken for the elimination of smog.
It was informed during the meeting that financial assistance would be provided with the collaboration of World Bank so as to make the industries environment-friendly. Mohsin Naqvi ordered ensuring implementation of Smog Prevention & Control Rules 2023 and sought a comprehensive plan from all departments concerned to bring down smog at the lowest level.
The CM directed to seal the institutions for two months on committing frequent violation of anti-smog policy. An advance affidavit should be taken from the farmers to prevent them from burning the paddy residue.
Mohsin Naqvi directed that all relevant institutions should ensure issuance of transport fitness certificate. Environment experts put forth their proposals and recommendations in the meeting.
Prof Dr Sajid Rasheed Ahmad, Principal College of Earth Environmental Sciences at Punjab University, said that motorcycle rickshaw was the main cause of environmental pollution. He stressed that a long-term policy was essential for the elimination of smog. Kilns should be transferred to agricultural waste instead of coals. Prof Dr Faiza Sharif of Government College University urged to give concessions to the industries in order to dispose of industrial wastes.
Zara Salman, CEO Development Policy Research, emphasised that smog like dengue and other diseases should be declared ‘Black Health Crisis’. Dr Shahana Khursheed Associate Professor at LUMS said that electric three-wheeler instead of motorcycle rickshaw should be promoted in City.
EPD expert Dr Wajid Ijaz outlined that in order to impart public awareness a health advisory system should be promoted in case of increase in the smog level. Shoaib Shafique, GM SUPARCO, underlined that smog cannot be eliminated by taking short-term measures. Dr Shahid Abbas, Director Meteorologist Lahore, informed that smog was expected to decrease due to more rainfall.
It was apprised during the briefing that slow speed of air by joining together with humidity and pollution gives rise to smog; 63 percent smog in City is contributed due to motorcycle and motorcycle rickshaw; 11 percent smog takes place due to motorcar and jeep; 46 percent increase occurred in the sale of motorcycle and rickshaw during the last decade.
Crop residue burning incidents in Sheikhupura and Okara are on the rise. Banning loader rickshaw transportation in the northern Lahore can possibly reduce smog level. The building of a factory involved in committing violation of restrictions being imposed for the elimination of smog will not be de-sealed.
Provincial Ministers SM Tanveer, Bilal Afzal, Javed Akram, Chief Secretary, IGP, secretaries, PITB chairman and other the officials concerned attended the meeting. Commissioners, Deputy Commissioners and Head of NUST Institute of Environment Science participated in the meeting via a video link.
CM reaches China
Caretaker Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi reached Beijing. Senior Chinese officials and high-ranking officers of Pakistan Embassy accorded a warm reception to Mohsin Naqvi at the Beijing Airport.
Provincial Ministers SM Tanveer, Amir Mir, Azfar Ali Nasir, Ibrahim Hassan Murad, Chief Secretary, Secretary Finance and other officials also accompanied him. Mohsin Naqvi was seen off by the Acting Chinese Consul General Mr Cao Ke at the Lahore Airport.
Acting Chinese Consul General Mr Cao Ke specially reached Lahore Airport to see off CM Mohsin Naqvi. The CM while thanking Acting Chinese Consul General Mr Cao Ke outlined that we want to bring durable changes in agriculture and other sectors of Punjab with the due collaboration of China. Mohsin Naqvi vowed that we would set the agriculture of Punjab on an innovative course by taking advantage from the experiences of China.
The Acting Chinese Consul General by expressing his good wishes for CM Mohsin Naqvi stated that the government of China and its people are keenly awaiting the arrival of their Pakistani brethren.
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