Officers of the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) and the Health Department have lodged 20 FIRs in the last three days over the presence of dengue larvae in government offices and private establishments.
A team of three EPD officials and two health officers found dengue mosquito larvae at the Customs Department and Income Tax Department offices. A buildings supervisor of the Customs Department and a deputy director of the Income Tax Department were arrested and cases were registered against them under Sections 268 (public nuisance) and 278 (public health hazard) of the Pakistan Penal Code.
Younas Zahid, the deputy director (environment), said that while Punjab government departments had mainly dealt with mosquito larvae under strict instructions from the top, there had been little or no anti-dengue efforts made at federal government departments. He said that FIRs had been lodged against staff at offices where they had been neglecting precautionary measures recommended by the EPD.
As many as 20 FIRs have been registered against government departments, housing societies, under-construction buildings and tyre workshops and godowns in the last three days by the officers of the environment protection department and the health department on finding the office premises containing dengue mosquitoes and larvae.
Cases have also been registered against the Agriculture Department, the (federal) Statistics Department, the Punjab University, Pakistan Air Force housing schemes, officials of the National Highway Authority at Babu Sabu Interchange and the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) office in Johar Town.
FIRs have also been registered against the Arabian Lounge restaurant on Jail Road, at four construction sites for plazas in Gulberg, and at one workshop each on Bund Road and Abbott Road. A ceramics shops at Ferozepur Road and a stone factory in Gulberg have also been sealed. Some FIRs have also been registered under Section 188 of the Dengue Control Regulations 2011.
On Saturday, the team raided Lady Willingdon Hospital, Lady Aitchison Hospital, Mayo Hospital, Ganga Ram Hospital and d’Montmorency College of Dentistry. Dengue larvae were found at all five.
“We had to remove the water coolers installed at a mosque at Lady Aitchison Hospital. We also found areas with stagnant water and larvae at Ganga Ram Hospital and the dental hospital,” said Zahid.