Encroachments on the city roads particularly at Fawara Chowk, Katchehri Road, Railway Road near Railway Gate, Post Office Road, Raja Chowk, congested Main Bazaar and Vanike Chowk, near the Bus/Wagon Stands on Gujranwala Road are being multiplied day-by-day and the TMA, District Administration and Traffic Police have completely failed to remove the encroachments.

According to a survey conducted by this correspondent, most of the owners of push carts (rehris) and vendors have occupied the roads with the connivance of some of the employees of TMA, public representatives and employees of different departments. In some areas the shopkeepers have themselves rented out some space in front of their shops to the vendors and rehriwalas, which have aggravated the mess on the roads.

Moreover, some varieties of paddy have been started pouring into the two grain markets which was located in the congested area and the tractor-trolleys bringing paddy from villages have further created traffic hazards.

Though in the past, the TMA and other authorities had launched half-hearted anti-encroachments campaigns several times, they failed to even decrease encroachments not to speak of their removal. During rush hour, especially in the morning and closure of school and college timings, encroachments caused multiple problems for the boy and girl students not to speak of the motorists and pedestrians.

Local Citizens Association, Student Unions and Housewives Association have called upon the DCO Hafizabad and Commissioner Gujranwala to order for the removal of all encroachments, as has been ordered by the Chief Minister of the Punjab. They also appealed to the DCO to arrange for the shifting of two grain markets to the new site without further delay for smooth flow of traffic in the city. 

BANNED PADDY VARIETY: Some coarse varieties of paddy including banned varieties viz Super Fine and Irri-9 have started pouring in the local grain markets for the past few days.

According to Kissan Board President District Hafizabad, per acre yield has been decreased due to heavy rains. He said that Basmati variety paddy would be harvested in the second or third week of October.

According to grain market traders, banned varieties of paddy, though wet, were being purchased by them at Rs1200 per 40 kg.

The housewives have questioned why the banned varieties of paddy could not be prevented from sowing. They were of the view that these varieties would surely be adulterated with superior quality of rice by the millers to fleece the consumers as well as to tarnish the image of the country while exporting adulterated rice.