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LAHORE: The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Thursday expressed its concerns over rise in smog and directed the government to reconsider its decision of closing schools from December 20. “If the government would not take decision to close the schools then it will pronounce its final verdict,” the court added.

The court directed the law officer to appear before it on December 17 with instruction from the government about the closer of the schools in petitions against increase in pollution. The court adjourned proceedings in these petitions till next hearing and called a notification about smog awareness campaign by Pemra also.

The court observed that steps would have to be taken immediately to control smog as the Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) had not taken concrete steps to tackle the issue.

The Deputy Director PDMA, however, took the plea before the court that barbeque shops are also causing increase in the smog and asked the court to order early closure of these shops. However, this suggestion was not much appreciated by the court.

The court directed the brick kiln owners to deposit the fine imposed on them within next week. It also directed the concerned officials to seal the brick kilns whose owners failed to pay the fine within a week.

The court also directed the concerned authorities to collect fine from the smoke-emitting factories and mills and observed that no concession should be made regarding recovery of fines.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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