LAHORE – The Punjab chief minister claimed on Tuesday that the city’s sanitation system was undergoing a positive change, saying that a modern, organised and a well-coordinated sanitation system had been introduced in the metropolis with the collaboration of Turkish companies.

“Lahore will be transformed into one of the most beautiful cities of the world,” asserted Shahbaz Sharif, promising to replicate similar sanitation systems in other Punjab cities, including Gujranwala, Faisalabad, Multan and Sialkot.

Shahbaz, while chairing a meeting on waste management at his tent office at Minar-e-Pakistan, also said that projects were under consideration to generate energy from waste, adding that landfill facilities were being constructed in Mahmood Booti and Lakhodair areas.

Representatives of Albayrak, Ozpak and Istak companies from Turkey, SWM Chairman Khawaja Ahmad Hasaan, Managing Director Waseem Ajmal and other officials concerned attended the meeting.

The chief minister asked the foreign companies to bring all their machinery and technology in the shortest possible time, so that the old system of sanitation could be overtaken by the modern one.

He also directed the officials for displaying flexes and banners on roads and mosques, so that civil society could be motivated for maintaining cleanliness in the city.

He directed the administration to fully cooperate with the Turkish companies that had planned to wash mosques with rosewater during the holy month of Ramazan.

Shahbaz also ordered that a necessary plan on management of industrial, construction and hospital waste be submitted to him, besides ensuring 100 per cent attendance of workers attached with the Turkish companies.

He said that a vigorous cleanliness week would be observed after the month of Ramazan to create public awareness through seminars, walks, declamations, symposium and lectures as regards the sanitary conditions.

In his briefing, SWM MD Waseem Ajmal Chaudhry said that 103 vehicles of the Albayrak Company and 100 vehicles of the Ozpak Company were operating in the provincial metropolis, whereas more vehicles would soon arrive in the city.

He said that special shopping bags were being distributed among the citizens for collection of domestic waste and that “mohallah” sanitation plan had been handed over to the Turkish companies.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif pledged to release a grant of Rs100 million to the Government College University, and ordered the Traffic Engineering and Planning Agency (TEPA) and Lahore Development Authority (LDA) not to take a single inch of the 148-year-old educational institution for a bus terminal, which was scheduled to be built on the land of the GCU, unless the Old Ravians and GCU authorities allowed for the same.

Talking to a delegation of Old Ravians’ Union, led by Dr Khalid Maznoor Butt, at his camp office, the chief minister said that none of the structures of the GCU would be changed without the consent of the Old Ravians and GCU authorities.

He said he and the majority of his family members studied at the GCU and that they had a great respect and love for their alma mater.

The CM also pledged a special grant for the extension of the GCU only girl’s hostel, where more than 300 students had been residing.

The delegates appreciated the CM’s initiative of providing state-of-the-art transportation facility to the people of Lahore.

 However, they requested the chierf minister to order relocation of a bus terminal They also briefed him about financial difficulties being faced by the institution due to the lack of funding by the HEC and Punjab government. Upon this, the chief minister pledged to immediately release a grant of Rs100 million to the alma mater.