CHITRAL: Provincial minister for population welfare Salim Khan has asked the forest department to introduce such species of trees in Chitral and make available its saplings in bulk quantity to the people in all valleys to meet the acute shortage of fuel wood.
Addressing a function under the aegis of Forest Division Chitral in connection with tree plantation campaign here on Thursday, he warned that the fast depleting oak forest in the area will result in horrendous situation in near future.
Mr. Khan stressed on development of agro-forestry in the area by enlisting the active participation of the local communities.
He also eulogized the efforts of Aga Khan Rural Support Programme and other organizations for the promotion of agro-forestry and at the same time severely criticized certain other organizations who, according to him, hoodwinked the people.
“They have filled the bulk of progress reports claiming development in all the social sector but in reality it is nothing and such a thing will no more be tolerated”, he said.
On this occasion, Chitral DCO Rahmatullah Wazir said that the district government with the collaboration of different organizations distributed 1.9 millions of saplings among the farmers in different valleys of the district.
He said that vigilance committees were being formed to monitor the process of afforestation so that all the stake-holders could perform their duties with responsibility accompanied by the fear of accountability as well.
Divsional Forest officer, Ahmed Jalil said that during the ongoing campaign, plantation will be carried out in 265 acres of land in Sourthern Chitral while 75 thousand saplings will be planted in Upper Chitral.
He said that a project is also being launched in the district to mitigate the negative impacts of the global warming which increased the vulnerability of the area as a result of melting down of glaciers in the Hindu Kush and Himalayan range of mountains.
Religious leaders Maulana Sher Aziz and Maulana Khaleequz Zaman also spoke on the occasion to highlight the importance of trees and its plantation in the light of Islamic teachings.