Islamabad: The residents of Sector B-17 have demanded of the concerned authorities to find out a permanent solution to tarcoal and asphalt burning units operating in nearby Margalla hills as these have increased air pollution in the area to a dangerous level.They have claimed that asphalt plants in Margalla hills adjacent to B-17 are running in full swing despite the fact that Islamabad High Court has already ordered to stop their operations.
There are some legal complications that are acting as stumbling blocks because the relevant authorities are yet to find out a solution to this problem keeping in view the legal aspects of this issue. The Sector B-17 is also located at the place where the demarcation of Margalla hills is not clear at some points. Arshad Malik, a resident of the sector, said “We cannot open windows and doors and even offer prayers in mosque because of severe smell and carbon smoke. The residents have been inhaling slow carbon poison from last many months emitting from tarcoal asphalt and tyre burning units in the Margalla hills.”
Shahid Iqbal, another resident, said “The smoke and air pollution are causing allergy and lung diseases among the residents of this area. When these burning units start functioning then smoke and smell force us to close our windows and doors.” When contacted, an official of the local administration has stated “This issue is not that simple as it is presented by the local people. First of all, the jurisdiction of the area where these units are operating has not been clearly defined. On the other hand, there are some other legal issues pending in the courts. So we have to follow the laws and procedures to address this issue.”