SIALKOT-There is no let-up in the worries of the visitors as they are continuously being fleeced by the contractors who are still collecting entry fees from the people at the banks of River Chenab near famous picnic spot Head Marala here.

People have expressed grave concerns and strongly protested the forced collection of fee, saying that some ‘politically influential’ contractors have fenced the banks of River Chenab at Head Marala in a bid to halt free entry of

the people.

Talking to The Nation, they said that the contractors had ‘occupied’ the banks of River Chenab, restricting free entry of the public.

They added that hundreds of people from Sialkot region visited the picnic spot along the banks of River Chenab at Head Marala, adding that the contractors allowed the visitors to enter the picnic spot after receiving Rs50 per head. “But they issue a ticket of Rs20 with ‘Marala Water Sports Club’ mentioned on it.” They said that the collectors were not ready to give any concession even to the children, adding that they were also charging Rs50 per vehicle as parking fee.

The perturbed people including Hassan Malik, Imran, Tajamal Hussain, Abdur Rauf, Arif Mehmood Sheikh, Nasir Mehmood, Salman Rafique, Khadija Iqbal, Bushra Parveen, Nilofar Hayyat and others protested against the highhandedness of the contractors. They blamed the contractors

for forcibly collecting fee at the picnic spot.

When contacted, officials of the Sialkot district administration said that no entry fee and parking fee had been levied at River Chenab by the district administration.

The visitors urged Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar, Commissioner Gujranwala Division Waqas Ali Mehmood and Sialkot Deputy Commissioner Dr Syed Bilal Haider to look into the matter in larger public interest.