ISLAMABAD    -   Senate Standing Committee on Climate Change on Saturday expressed displeasure over lack of knowledge on the part of Capital Development Authority (CDA), Municipal Corporation Islamabad (MCI) officers of issues pertaining to Faisal Mosque’s maintenance, deteriorating air quality index and issues of hygiene.

The committee meeting held here, with Senator Sitara Ayaz in chair, was attended by Senator Samina Saeed, Senator Sherry Rehman, Senator Sana Jamali, Senator Kesho Bai, Senator Faisal Javed, Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed, Senator Muhammad Akram and senior officers from the Ministry for Climate Change besides other concerned officials.

The committee was briefed on issues pertaining to Faisal Mosque’s maintenance and cleanliness. The committee also took up the issue of Islamabad’s deteriorating Air Quality Index and the issues of hygiene.

The committee asserted that the blame game by various government departments must end, and that accepting responsibility was the only way forward.

While deliberating on garbage collection and cleanliness of Faisal Mosque, the Committee was informed that janitorial services were being outsourced to M/S Dani enterprises with a contract that costs Rs13.80 million.

Members of the Committee were dismayed at the plummeting level of cleanliness at Faisal Mosque and questioned CDA about the feasibility of such a deployment where no visible results had been yielded. The committee demanded that the contract be canceled immediately.

Discussing deterioration in Air Quality Index in Islamabad, Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed was of the view that despite greenery, capital’s air quality was worse than that of New Delhi and Beijing. The committee directed the EPA to submit all details regarding this in the next meeting. Taking up the matter of the old Landfill site in Sector I-12, the committee showed grave concern over conditions of hygiene.

EPA informed the committee that the new landfill site had not been regularized as yet, and therefore dumping at the new site could not begin.

It was also told that the new landfill site fell in the jurisdiction of the Forestry Department and hence an NOC from Ministry of Climate Change is required for this purpose. Members of the committee, while showing serious concern over these issues, inquired as to why these were not brought to their knowledge earlier. The committee summoned Chairman CDA, Mayor Islamabad and DG EPA in the next meeting before concluding the meeting.