ISLAMABAD: Minister for Science and Technology Ch Fawad Hussain on Wednesday said the government would upgrade Pakistan Museum of Natural History (PMNH).

Addressing the participants of a 15-day International Training Workshop on ‘Design, Survey and Analysis of Wildlife Populations’, the minister said majority of the people did not have any knowledge of the natural history museum.

Fawad Chaudhry said besides animals, plants, rocks, minerals and fossils, the PMNH had preserved 700 years old teeth of elephant.

He said that Pakistan was a beautiful country and tourists enjoyed its natural beauty.

“There are, however, misconceptions about Pakistan abroad, which need to be allayed through an effective strategy,” the minister said.

He underlined the need for preserving the wildlife, which was ignored in the past, adding love for wildlife was an important aspect of the society.

The minister said societies, which did not have love for animals, became victims of decline.

“Ecosystem of the country is a great gift of nature to us,” the minister said.

He said the government was taking steps to improve the condition of zoo in Islamabad, which was neglected by the previous governments.

In the past, the minister said beef meant for lions ends up in the house of directors, adding that after death of one elephant in the zoo the other became mentally sick.

Director General Dr Mohammad Rafique briefed the participants about the purpose of the workshop and said it would help them protect the wildlife and the environment.

He said the museum had state-of-the-art gemstone and biodiversity galleries while another had been dedicated to dinosaurs and fossils.

He said a gallery had displayed higher plants, medicinal plants, lower plants, world of mammals, world of reptiles, world of fishes, etc.

Dr Mohammad Rafique said the museum had taken a number of initiatives for adding more varieties of natural resources such as plants, animals, minerals, rocks, fossils, etc. in the museum to attract more and more visitors.

This museum, being the only of its kind, was a source of education for thousands of students and researchers who visited on daily basis and were provided a comfortable environment and maximum facilitation to conduct study on different species, he said.

Published in Dawn, July 4th, 2019

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