People found selling paan will be deported says top Dubai Municipality official
By Sunita Menon, Staff Reporter
Published: October 08, 2008, 11:51
Dubai: People caught selling or making 'paan' will face stiff penalties and deportation, an official of Dubai Municipality has warned.
Engineer Hussain Nasser Lootah, Acting Director General of Dubai Municipality, said this as he inaugurated an innovative environmental drive dubbed "Say Yes to a Clean Naif."
Lootah, who launched the campaign in front of Al Kaifak Cafeteria in Al Sabkha area said, "There is a reward of Dh5,000 to those who tip us of on 'paan sellers and manufactures."
The month long campaign starting from October 9 to November 13 is aimed at restoring the charm and beauty of the area.
Road shows under the campaign will involve 12 people who will go round the streets wearing clothes advertising the drive, focusing on cleanliness.
In addition, there will be stilt walkers, stage shows and contests between shops and buildings to select the cleanest shop and cleanest building.
Lootah added that the campaign aims at tackling the problems of unhealthy practices and transforming the busy area to a cleaner place that suits the name and fame of Dubai.
The official went round the area distributing leaflets that provide tips on how to keep the city clean.
He interacted with the public and with those employed in restaurants.
Lootah said that the campaign will create awareness among the residents about general cleanliness by asking them not to throw dirt, cigarette butts and other wastes on the roads and avoid spitting in public places, in addition to discouraging the practice of hanging clothes on the balconies of their flats.
Lootah, who appealed to the public to support the drive, said the campaign will be taken to other areas of the city such as Al Gubaibah, Al Sabkha, Al Fuhaidi, Al Karama, Al Qusais and Al Quoz at a later stage.
The environment drive, which is formulated with social activities, will involve people of different categories in the society including residents and traders in the area. The activities will include road shows involving whoever available at the time in the area and long duration social activities aimed at the area.
The public awareness campaign also includes advertisements in local media.
The municipality has already started publishing advertisements in newspapers in different languages.
In addition to this, there will be the Western Union Clean Store Contest, which will run from October 15 to November 15. The contest will ask people to maintain a clean environment in stores, avoid eating, drinking and smoking in the stores, not carrying too many bags, not leaving goods outside the stores and not dropping litter on the pavement.
In addition to publishing advertisements in the print and electronic media the awareness creating activities of the campaign also include distributing brochures for three days from the starting of the campaign and placing advertisements on buildings and main streets in the Naif area.
What is 'Paan'?
'Paan' consists of chewing betel leaf (Piper betel) combined with the areca nut. There are many regional variations. In Dubai, chewing and spitting of paan, especially in public places, was prohibited following Local Order No 28 of 1985.
Paan is a small parcel of betel nut, tobacco and other ingredients wrapped in a betel leaf, it is largely popular among people from Indian subcontinent. Despite a clampdown by the municipality, the paan trade still flourishes illegally in many lanes and by-lanes of Bur Dubai and Deira.
How severe is the problem? How do you think you, as a citizen, can help in this iniative to keep your emirate cleaner?
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