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Rally against plant not complying with environmental standards held in Osh

Residents of Zhapalak district held a rally in Osh city today. They demand to shut down the steel bars manufacturing plant.

The protesters told reporters that management of the enterprise does not comply with sanitary and environmental standards, pollutes the air and harms the health of the local population.

«We hold the rally not with a request to release thieves from prison. We ask you to close the factory that pollutes our atmosphere. But, for some reason, the police create obstacles to us, we are forbidden to express our opinion. But recently, when 5,000 people came to the rally (rally in support of Raiymbek Matraimov, who confessed to corruption and was arrested. — Note of 24.kg news agency), the police were silent and did not say anything to the participants,» one of the residents of Zhapalak said.

He noted that the City Hall created a special commission consisting of specialists from various services, including the sanitary and environmental inspection and villagers to check the enterprise.

«The commission came to the conclusion that the plant, indeed, does not comply with the environmental standards, so we demand to close it immediately,» the protesters said.

Vice Mayor of Osh city Asylbek Topchubaev came out to the protesters and urged to act within the law.

«The mayor has no authority to close this or that enterprise arbitrarily. Within the framework of his powers, he gave instructions to create a commission to check the activities,» the official said.

Municipality lawyer Rysbek Kulov noted that based on the conclusion of the commission the plant’s activities were temporarily suspended.

«It is necessary to file a lawsuit against the enterprise to close it. The court will need to take into account the conclusion of the commission on non-compliance with sanitary, environmental, building standards. We will provide you with legal assistance whenever possible. The issue needs to be resolved only within the framework of the law,» the lawyer concluded.

Zhapalak is considered to be the most problematic micro-district of the city in terms of the environment pollution. There are four brick factories, a steel bars plant and a landfill. There are also small boilers and the Heating and Power Plant. They all use fuel oil and coal. All of this is the cause of smog.