LUDHIANA: Cautioning against a repeat of a Gayaspura-like tragedy, the Sambhav Foundation, a non-governmental organization (NGO) has called on micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) operating in inner-city areas. A separate cluster is called for. This representation was made before Deputy Commissioner Sakshi Sahni. NGO representative Rahul Verma said that there was a time when the population of the city was low, and the number of industrial units was also limited. At that time, the city’s sewage system was designed to serve an average of four people per family. But there is a big difference between past and present. Apart from the high population, the MSME industry is also flourishing here. Small units have an average of 30 to 50 employees working. In such a situation, the pressure of industrial water discharge into domestic sewers is pointing towards a repeat of tragedy like Gayaspora. Verma claimed that the administration had allotted plots in Focal Point Phase 8 a few years ago to promote the industry, but ironically, most of the plots were acquired by operators of large units. A cycle valley was established in Dhanansu village a few years ago, but MSME units could not be established here either. He also highlighted the issue of setting up of new industries outside the limits of the municipal corporation, where a change in land use policy is required. Not being followed properly. New factories being built in rural areas outside the city limits are not leaving space as per the prescribed rules. This irregularity will affect the traffic of the city in time to come. He has requested the DC to cross-check the structure of the areas where industries have been set up on CLU basis. He said that there is a need to build new commercial centers outside the city to get rid of the traffic jam in the inner areas of the city. But surprisingly, the administration is allowing multi-storied complexes to be built in the most congested areas of the city like Shahpur Road, Goshala Road and Fieldganj etc.

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