The Lahore High Court, in response to a plea on measures taken to control air pollution, ordered the Punjab interim government on Monday to close all schools and colleges in its smog-hit districts on Saturdays.
Justice Shahid Karim also ordered the government to introduce a work-from-home policy for two days a week. He censured the Lahore commissioner for failing to control smog and ordered his immediate removal, along with the removal of the deputy commissioners in Sheikhupura, Jhang, Hafizabad, Khanewal, Nankana, and Bahawalnagar. He also ordered the removal of the director general of environment.
The judge expressed disappointment at the shared videos of crop residual burning and remarked that everything is shut down with a mere notification, after which all the officers go on leave. He said that the entire city gets disrupted if traffic stops for even five minutes and that vehicle exhaust is the main cause.
The court adjourned the hearing till Wednesday.
Smog, a type of air pollution caused by smoke and fog mixing together, can have a number of disadvantages, including:
- Health problems: Smog can cause respiratory problems, heart problems, and cancer, especially in children, the elderly, and people with existing health conditions.
- Reduced visibility: Smog can reduce visibility, making driving difficult and increasing the risk of accidents.
- Damage to plants and crops: Smog can damage plants and crops, reducing yields and increasing food prices.
- Economic damage: Smog can damage buildings and other infrastructure, and reduce tourism and business activity. In addition to these disadvantages, smog can also have a negative impact on the environment, contributing to climate change and acid rain.**