Encroachments on roads, streets and footpaths in different areas of the Sangla Hill, Shahkot and Nankana Sahib are on the rise, creating problems for pedestrians and motorists.

Shopkeepers have encroached upon the pavements in front of their shops and vendors set up stalls on roads forcing pedestrians to walk in the middle of the road and hindering the traffic flow in almost all markets of the district.

“The authorities concerned always claim to launch anti-encroachment drives, but encroachments reappear soon after operations are over,” said, Muhammad Suhaib, a local resident. The failure of the district administration is obvious from the fact that shopkeepers at Main Bazaar, Railway Road, Circular Road, Clock Tower Chowk and Hameed Nazami Road have occupied footpaths in front of their shops. Yasir, a shopper at Main Bazaar, said the TMA were responsible for removing encroachments, but it had failed to do its job.

Assistant Commissioner Safder Virk said the TMA launched anti-encroachment campaigns to keep the roads and footpaths clear. He said it was a wrong impression that the TMA was not aware of the situation. He warned shopkeepers and vendors not to encroach footpaths otherwise a strict action would be taken against them.