The Lahore High Court has ordered all educational institutions in Punjab to close on Saturdays until the end of January due to unhealthy air quality caused by smog. The interim Punjab government has made face masks mandatory for residents in 10 districts and imposed a limited lockdown to tackle the pollution levels, but the smog problem persists. The Air Quality Index in Lahore was recorded at 293, falling under the unhealthy category. The main pollutant, PM2.5, can cause serious health issues. The court also directed the government to implement work from home for two days a week in the private sector. The court highlighted the need for further action against industrial units and government officers found to be non-compliant. Smog is caused by various factors and poses health risks, especially for those with respiratory and cardiovascular diseases. Experts advise citizens to take precautions, such as wearing masks, using air purifiers, avoiding outdoor activities, and seeking medical attention if they experience discomfort. The court adjourned the hearing till Nov 22.
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