ISLAMABAD  – The sale of uncovered eatables is going unchecked, giving rise to diseases like typhoid, cholera and gastroenteritis in the twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi.Owners of these illegally established eateries, which have mushroomed at every nook and corner of the twin cities, serve food on stalls and small carts without taking hygiene into account. It is seen that some of these eateries procure water for cooking, washing and serving from roadside municipality water taps, which are often surrounded by garbage.The eatables are not properly covered after cooking. Even the food is cooked on the roadside. The dust and smoke emitted by vehicles make these roads an unhygienic place to cook. Dr Baig, a medical expert at Polyclinic, said that eateries outside schools, colleges and other points of the city are places wherefrom people should never eat, as they could catch a disease or infection from there very easily.Shehzad Ali, a student said, “At least they should cover the eatables. Cooking on roadside can never be considered hygienic. The dust particles and smoke can cause problems for the people who eat from these shops and vendors.” A private employee, Saqib Tahir, said, “Even child labour laws have not proved a deterrent for these eatery owners. How can they expect kids to wash utensils properly?”He said the health department should look into hygiene levels of these eateries to prevent the likely outbreak of waterborne diseases. When an official of the food quality control was contacted, he claimed that crackdowns were being conducted regularly against violators and stern actions had been taken in this regard several times.“We are already working on a campaign that will be launched soon to ensure people’s health. The department will issue strict orders to all such eateries to make them cover food items,” he said. “An intensive awareness campaign will be run in the city for the general public. Even people themselves must not have food or drinks at eateries that don’t follow proper hygiene instructions.”