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April 20, 2020

People are talking about —

Islamabad

 
April 20, 2020

— the Indus River basket weavers who used to collect raw material free of cost by traveling long distances in the riverbed on foot, but now certain influential people had started forcing them to pay for the vegetation they require. People say these artisans depend on selling their baskets to survive with the meagre income they get from their labour, so it is shameful that those who have enough are demanding payment from these poor souls.

— the low cost method Pakistani researchers at the Institute of Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering have developed to clean waste water and sewage, dubbed ‘floating treatment wetlands’ (FTWs). People say the solution has displayed promising results in cleaning sewage, factory effluent and even water contaminated with hydrocarbons and heavy metals, the biggest threats to both the environment and wildlife that thrives on them and, by working their way up the food chain, they also ultimately threaten humans.

— the fact finding report that flaws have been detected in the security around the Torkham border and how goods truck which are not electronically registered are involved in the scam. People say finding out that about three hundred and fifty five trucks skipped the border post without paying tax was scoffed at by officials, but has been proved correct by customs intelligence and its troubling that while depriving the exchequer, they also pose a threat to our national security.

— the news that the government claims to have prepared safe operating procedures (SOPs) for different sectors but the fact is that this is not visible because they are not being enforced. People say the government must introduce an awareness campaign for introducing SOPs through print, radio and TV media and there should also be social condemnation of those who violate these instructions. It is only through strict adherence of SOPs that we will be able to flatten the curve.

— the different opinions being expressed about whether the ‘dam fund’ should be used to help fight the corona virus or be preserved for building the dam and how environment experts are saying it is not a debatable issue. People say that those in favour of using the fund for controlling the virus need to realize that water is one of our depleting resources and we need it to survive, so instead of being emotional about the issue we should think about it rationally.

— the manner in which unscrupulous persons are hoarding non-perishable items of daily use to enhance their cost so they are beyond the reach of the common man. People say Pakistanis have the reputation of being among the most charitable persons in the world but these black sheep think only of filling their own coffers and taking advantage of a the situation, so it is a good idea for the government to use intelligence agencies to seek them out and penalize them.

— the organized ‘beggar brigade’ and how it has come into action to take advantage of the extraordinary situation created by the lockdown in the country. People say these ‘beggars’ are mainly criminals who pose as labourers and then fleece the public or even rob those who go out and about, either for their daily needs or to distribute food items to those in genuine need, so everyone should be careful while engaging in these activities. — I.H.