ISLAMABAD-Despite having the first-ever local body system in place, the federal capital is giving a shabby look due to stench emitting garbage heaps and overflowing sewers at its almost every market and bazaar.

The filthy markets of various sectors including G-6, G-7, G-8, I-9, I-8, H-9 and others are casting shadow over the present government’s ‘Clean, Green Pakistan’ initiative due to bad sanitary conditions, civic agency inertia and lack of public awareness.

Markets like Melody, Sitara, Aabpara and Karachi Company have gradually lost their splendour where Islooites once thronged for food and shopping.

A number of shopkeepers also complained of declining business while criticising the slackness of Metropolitan Corporation of Islamabad (MCI).

“When the first-ever local body got elected in Islamabad, I was confident that the basic amenities would be provided to the residents but I was wrong,” Mukhtar Ali, a shopkeeper in Karachi Company market said while expressing his dismay over the prevailing unhygienic and poor sanitary condition.

Pointing out the irregular visits of sanitary workers, he said they dumped waste within the market vicinity and burnt when it turned into small mound.

The move disturbed the customer influx due to pungent smell of the smoke, he added.

Shair Gul, another shopkeeper at Abpara Market narrating the same story said he had lodged several complaints at different forums but to no avail.

He urged the city managers to clean the markets twice a day and install a small bin outside every shop, besides placing at least one big dumpster outside every market to ensure neat and clean markets and bazaars and launch sensitisation campaign for visitors.

After installation of bins, Gul said the city administration must declare the markets and bazaars as no-littering zones and take strict actions against violators.

“Once home, I use dust bin for dumping trash, but at markets I throw plastic wrappers away due to absence of trash bins,” Hassan Ali told APP when he was spotted littering at Melody.

“I know, littering in public spaces is a shameful act but what can I do when I do not have any other option,” he said while highlighting the shortage of waste bins in the market. He asked the quarters concerned for placing the bins in every market to restore their beauty.

Another visitor at Sitara market, Amir Maseeh said he along with his family used to sit at the market in evening but stinking heaps of garbage and stray dogs wandering in the search of food had forced them to stay at home.

Contrary to the ground situation, a senior official in Sanitation Department of the MCI claimed that the cleanliness drives were being carried out in every market of the city on regular basis.

He said the sanitation department was ensuring collection and disposal of garbage in Markaz of every sector of the capital city including sectors of G, H, I and F series. The official said sixty per cent of the markets’ garbage comprised of green waste and collection of such type of trash was not the responsibility of sanitation wing of MCI, he added.

However, he said, now the department was lifting every type of garbage from the markets due to shortage of staff in other formations of the MCI.

To a query, he said, some two years back the MCI had installed the waste bins in Jinnah, Super and Melody market, but they were removed by the shopkeepers.

After getting the magisterial power in March this year, the assistant commissioners of capital city had penalised a number of violators in their respective areas against littering, sources in Islamabad Capital Territory administration informed.

The administration had imposed more than Rs400,000 fine on the litterers, dumping the waste other than the designated points or trash trolleys.

Factories fined Rs0.15m for not

complying with minimum wage act

The Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) Administration has imposed a fine of Rs150,000 on some factories operating in the federal capital over non compliance of minimum wage act.

Director Industries and Labour along with his team inspected five factories and one petrol pump in Kahuta Industrial Triangle area, an official source in ICT told APP on Sunday.

To implement orders in industrial sector, he said, the department had constituted 5 inspection teams to ensure provision of fixed wages to the industrial workers besides educating the entities about the fixed salary of labours.

The ICT administration, he said, would launch an awareness campaign for educating informal sector’s skilled, semi-skilled, unskilled and juvenile workers about their fixed minimum daily wages.

To a query, he said five teams were more than enough as 95 percent industries were located in Sector I-9 only. The teams were paying visit to every factory and shop to check whether the workers were being paid according to the salary fixed by the administration, adding that prompt action was being taken if any complaint was received in that regard.

The official said the administration had addressed around 35,000 complaints of labourers during the last year.

To another query, he said the departments lacked complete data of informal workers, employed in commercial establishment of the federal capital, which prompted the need to regularise informal employment sector.

He underlined the need to bring informal employment sector into Federal Board of Revenue taxation system, besides registering them with the capital’s labour departments. The move would simultaneously help build their complete database and ensure their rights protection, he added.

Since the registration of informal workforce was minimal at present, the administration has decided to reach out every informal employee, whether working in a workshop, restaurant or service station, for sensitising them about their salary status, he said.

Previously, Ehsaas Labour Welfare and Social Protection Group had recommended the registration of informal workers with Employees Old-Age Benefit Institution in a bid to give them pension, social security and welfare packages.