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ISLAMABAD: “There is need to change the garbage collection system in the federal capital as it is creating more mess. Otherwise soon residents of city will face the same problems which are being faced by residents of Karachi,” the head of an environment and public health organisation said on Tuesday.

In a statement, Subh-i-Nau chairperson Shahida Kausar Farooq said most local residents collect their garbage in plastic bags and leave them outside their gates or in their gardens at night so that they can be collected by the sanitation department in the morning.

She said when that when these bags are left outside at night, they are torn by animals and children who collect paper from the garbage, which spreads the garbage in the street. A number of residents also dispose of their garbage in drains, which she said would one day “choke” the drains since there are no arrangements to clean them.

She said that some people have made their own garbage dumps is nearby empty plots, which become home to stray dogs, cats and rats. She said that a cleanliness drive she had started found more than 200 rats in just I-8. Ms Farooq called the situation alarming “as people can fall prey to the plague”.

She said garbage should be collected as per international standards in three different boxes, for dry, wet and toxic garbage.

“Capital’s administration should set an example for other cities by establishing such system. Citizens should also show civic sense,” she said.

Published in Dawn, January 24th, 2018