PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Wildlife Department on Tuesday distributed cheques worth Rs90 million among local communities of Chitral and Kohistan districts.

The amount has been accrued from the auctions of the trophy hunting permits.

A statement issued here said minister for forestry, environment and wildlife Ishtiaq Urmur was the chief guest at the cheques distribution ceremony.

On the occasion, chief conservator wildlife department Dr Mohsin Farooque said the province had pioneered the trophy hunting programme in 1998, and till date, 78 trophy permits of markhor and ibex had been auctioned by the department.

He said in 2019 a single permit for hunt of markhor was sold at US dollar 1500,000, which was the record rate throughout the world.

He said 80 per cent of the trophy proceeds went to the local communities.

Mr Ishtiaq Urmur said thanks to the conservation efforts undertaken by the wildlife department and the respective communities, the number of markhor in KP had jumped to 6,000 from a few hundred sometimes back.

Published in Dawn, April 7th, 2021

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