The provisional government of Punjab has announced the emergency shutdown of educational institutions under a thick layer of haze that has disturbed daily activities throughout the region. At a Lahore press conference, Punjab’s acting chief minister, Mohsin Naqvi, declared that starting on Friday, November 10, all offices and schools in areas heavily impacted by smog will close in an effort to protect the public’s health.
Punjab Govt Holiday Announcement due to SMOG & Real-time Air Quality Index (AQI)
Caretaker Provincial Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi made the announcement during a press conference on Tuesday, as they work to reduce the region’s chronic pollution.
This temporary stop-page of operations will impact offices and schools in the Lahore division, encompassing the districts of Wazirabad, Gujranwala, and Nankana Sahib. It’s crucial to remember that this closure is exclusive to the current week.
On Saturday of next week, commercial markets will also close as an additional measure to address the environmental situation. In addition, places of entertainment like hotels, parks, and movie theatres are set to close on Friday and Saturday instead of Sunday as usual.
The importance of these measures is supported by shocking findings from a recent study conducted by the University of Chicago, which has caused concern among Lahore residents. The study reveals a serious environmental health concern, indicating that Lahore’s persistent haze is reducing people’s life expectancy by an estimated seven years. The consequences are especially catastrophic for the city’s youth, with the study making a troubling parallel: the impact of current levels of pollution on children is comparable to the health impacts of smoking 30 cigarettes each day.