LAHORE -  The Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry (LCCI) has demanded of the Punjab government to re-open all those industrial units immediately that were closed under the plea of smog.

Industrial closure in the wake of smog has increased the number of unemployed people in the province as these units employ thousands of workers. In a statement issued here, LCCI Acting President Zeshan Khalil said that closure of industries was a sheer injustice as these are targeted to hide the incompetence of the concerned government departments that were responsible to find out the true reasons of smog and pollution.

Zeshan said that the Lahore chamber has repeatedly made it clear that industries are not responsible for smog. Various factors are playing role in this regard and the major one was delay in rains that is a natural process and industries have nothing to do with it. He said that deforestation, millions of vehicles and stubble burning are playing havoc with environment but instead of controlling these factors, environment department has find out an easy way to shift all of its responsibilities on the industries.

The LCCI acting president said that industrial closure is causing huge damage to the businessmen who are already working in difficult conditions. He said that thousands of daily wagers are struggling for bread and butter while the government is also facing revenue loss. “Although this phenomenon of smog has almost vanished after rain in the province. Issue of smog and pollution cannot be resolved until and unless true reasons are found and tackled. The Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry is ready to play its best role in this regard by holding seminars and workshops to create awareness amongst the masses”, he added.

He demanded of Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif to take notice of this issue and direct environment department to reopen the closed industrial sector with immediate effects as closure of industries and unemployment at vast scale is against his vision.