Founding Editor: Shafqat Munir   

‘No public toilet’ woes the business hub 

03 November 2010 11:39:12

‘No public toilet’ woes the business hub

By: Ghulam Rehman

RAWALPINDI: Commercial market in Satellite Town is the major shopping  center and the heart of Rawalpindi city, having more than 400 shops the market lacks even a single public toilet in the whole business hub, which creates  woes among the customers especially females and children during their shopping hours.

“The biggest fear in our minds before leaving home for shopping is, where to attend toilet if our children demand” said a woman customer in a cosmetic shop.

lack of public toilet in the market is not only a big anguish for the customers but also a shameful obsession for the shopkeepers and their sales persons, “we are using the corners of the shopping plazas as a toilet in the open, when people are looking us in a hatred way” said Mr Mohammad Israr, a sales man in a shop, “so what to do? Where to urinate?” he added when asked that why he does this practice in the corners.

Some corners in the market have graffiti saying “Yahaan peshaab karna mana hai” (you can’t urinate here), “Dekho gadha ka bacha peshaab kar raha hai” (look kid of the donkey is urinating) etc and often right in front of these graffiti we also see someone doing urinate right in the corners.

“There is no toilet in the market, I can’t go too far in the corners to do urinate, because I am alone in the shop to deal with customers” said Mr.Fizar Hussain shah a sales man in a toys shop, he used to go to the nearby narrow street to urinate during the working hours.

Mr Zaki Farrok, an owner of a books shop said that “I used to go to the nearby mosque to use the toilet, but the gate of the mosque remains closed except the prayers times”

Irshad Ali, a sales man in a garment shop said that “Though I am not a regular ‘Namazi’ but being a regular toilet user of the mosque I often feel a shame to use it, but what to do?, there is no any other option”

It is really a shameful practice to do so; use of toilet in mosques by the business people is a bad practice because the regular ‘Namazis’ remain on wait standing in a queue out side the toilets, “I often get late to offer my prayer in the time because of the long queues out side the toilet” said Mr. Umer Yaseen, a regular ‘Namazi’ in the Jamiah Masjid in the market.

There are two parks in the market, the first one is for general public and the second one (Bachoun ki dunya)a fun land designed especially for children, many families visit these parks daily but unfortunately the surroundings of both parks look like a mini toilet with hatred smells.

“Most of the people even don’t care of ‘Kibla Rukh’ (Kabba), they are urinating besides the compound walls of the parks” said one of the gardeners of the commercial market’s park.

Mr.Raja Toheed Ahmad the president of ‘Markazi Anjuman-E-Tajran’ (MAT) (a sort of trade union) commercial market told this reporter that “We have installed four toilets each for male and female on government’s land near to ‘Tingue’ Market (situated in the corner of the commercial) but the nearby shop owners took stay order on it saying that it would prevent their customers to come across to reach their shops

“Through a positive consciences with the stay holders, when we agreed them to finalized the toilets, it was too late; as the Chief Minister of the Punjab’s order reached us that the governmental lands would not be allotted to use for any kind of constructions” Mr. Toheed added.

The vice president of MAT Mr. S.Ishrat Hayyat and general secretary Mr.Sajid Qureshi also expressed their view that they are representative of more than 400 shop owners in commercial market and they have elected by their votes, so to fulfill their demands including installation of public toilets was utmost responsibility of their team.