The Civil Aviation Authority retracted on Sunday its decision to make plastic wrapped luggage compulsory at all airports in Pakistan. The policy was withdrawn after it received criticism from passengers, politicians and environmentalists.
People criticized the policy, suggesting it had been introduced to enrich an unnamed company tasked with the wrapping.
“What is the logic for this requirement …if this isn’t legalized corruption,” one angry traveller tweeted. Asif Nawaz Shah, another social media critic, called the new policy a “corrupt profit-making endeavour”.
It’s not about how thin or thick the plastic is 🤦🏽♂️🤦🏽♂️🤦🏽♂️
Does the CAA not have an HSE dept mandated to conduct impact assessments? Or have those procedures been waived for this corrupt profit-making endeavour? Seriously shameful stuff #plasticpollution #plasticpakistan https://t.co/uN5n1M2doJ
— Asif Nawaz Shah (@asifnshah) July 20, 2019
Others suggested the quantity of plastic needed was wasteful.
Ayesha Tammy Haq, a lawyer and broadcast journalist, asked Minister of Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam and Prime Minister Imran Khan to withdraw the notification.
Why is the #CAA destroying the #environment the #PM @ImranKhanPTI @PTIofficial have said save the #country its #seas #rivers #livestock #SayNoToPlastic so why has this notification been issued it must be #withdrawn @aminattock pic.twitter.com/iiW4m9XwYq
— Ayesha Tammy Haq (@tammyhaq) July 20, 2019
Senior PTI leader Jehangir Tareen also tweeted that the “illogical notification issued by the CAA” should be withdrawn.
Just came across a very illogical notification issued by the CAA. Forcing passengers to wrap their luggage is not on. People should have the right to decide whether they want their luggage wrapped or not. The notification should be withdrawn asap. pic.twitter.com/lEyFhOcAJR
— Jahangir Khan Tareen (@JahangirKTareen) July 21, 2019
The notification was called “absurd” by Aslam, who thanked the CAA for taking back its decision.
— Malik Amin Aslam (@aminattock) July 21, 2019
Minister of Human Rights Shireen Mazari also tweeted that the notification is wrong and that it was never discussed in the cabinet.
She added that there would be an inquiry to investigate who let the CAA issue the notification.
The incorrect notification withdrawn – as I had said this morning it was never a federal govt decision. Will ask to have an inquiry as to how and who in CAA put out such a notification. All bureaucracy should know that Federal Govt means Cabinet! This issue never discussed! pic.twitter.com/5cpbWJb5rP
— Shireen Mazari (@ShireenMazari1) July 21, 2019
All check-in baggage of international and domestic passengers is to be wrapped with plastic sheets at the initial stage of scanning at search counters of the ASF, ANF and Customs, said a notification issued on Thursday.
Shahrukh Nusrat, director general of Pakistan’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), said Saturday that wrapping baggage was now “mandatory”, and it was being done for “safety” purposes. Passengers would have to pay Rs50 per bag for the wrapping, Nusrat said in a statement.