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MANSEHRA: The district administration has issued warrants for the arrest of 37 timber smugglers over illegal removal of trees.

The warrants were issued under Section 3 of Maintenance of Public Order (3MPO).

The development comes as Mansehra deputy commissioner Mohammad Zubair takes note of the reports of drastic chopping down of pines, deodar and biar trees in Siren, Kaghan, Oghi, Agror and Tanawal forest divisions.

Mansehra admin says action taken over illegal tree cutting

A circular issued by the DC also informed the police and divisional forest officers concerned for the immediate arrest of timber smugglers saying they would be confined for at least 40 days and the duration could be enhanced if the need emerged.

“We want to preserve our environment, which is under severe threat due to the illegal cutting down of forests in the district,” he told reporters here.

He said the administration would begin a week-long tree plantation campaign in the district today (Saturday) and would provide over 90,000 saplings to growers free of charge.

Mr Zubair said the administration would plant over 16,000 saplings in the district.

“We have already planted over 15,000 trees during the three-day Naran Festival. Visitors are allowed to attend the festival only if they promise to plant a tree in Kaghan valley,” he said.

BUDGET: District nazim of Torghar Dilroz Khan on Friday presented Rs1.17 billion budget for the current financial year in the council, saying tourist resorts will be created at two points to generate income for the people’s welfare.

“Torghar was given the status of a settled district by the provincial government in 2011 but it continues to be without own revenue. Now we have planned to develop tourist resorts to generate our income,” he told the council, which met with convener Said Nawab Gul in the chair.

The nazim said Rs510 million would be spent the salary of the employees of devolved departments.

“We have earmarked Rs60 million for expenditure, while the rest of allocations will go to developmental part of the budget,” he said.

The nazim said two tourist points would be developed in Machassar and Punja Gali areas.

“We have planned to attract tourists to the picturesque points not only to generate income but promote tourism,” he said.

The nazim said a chairlift would be installed in Kotkay Hassainzai at the cost of Rs60 million to link two parts of the district to benefit the local residents.

Published in Dawn, September 1st, 2018