Shehbaz orders urgent steps to control pine forest fire

Published May 22, 2022
In this file photo, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif chairs a meeting at the Prime Minister's Office. — DawnNewsTV
In this file photo, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif chairs a meeting at the Prime Minister's Office. — DawnNewsTV

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Saturday asked the authorities concerned to utilise the latest fire fighting techniques and arrangements to overcome raging inferno in the Shirani pine forest area of Balochistan as well as all such blazes in future.

While directing the officials concerned to take immediate and emergency steps to cope with the catastrophe, the premier also asked the authorities concerned to deploy monitoring teams in the affected area and keep close coordination with all relevant authorities to tackle the challenge.

PM Sharif highlighted the need for employing all the latest tools and techniques such as those used in the US and Australia including spray of wildfire retardants through helicopters to suppress raging flames. He sought a future mechanism to overcome such incidents, asking the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) chairman to submit a plan within two weeks after consultation with relevant authorities.

He assured the Balochistan government of the federal government’s full support to assist the bereaved families financially by bearing their medical expenses as well as expenditure of education of their children. He asked the provincial authorities to provide compensation to the heirs of those who lost their lives in the Shirani fire.

NDMA asked to file plan within 14 days to tackle future blazes

PM praises Baloch girls

Meanwhile, PM Sharif posted a short video clip of students on Girls Cadet College, Turbat on his Twitter handle and praised the passion of Baloch students, calling them the “future of thriving Pakistan”.

On his Twitter handle, the prime minister stressed upon provision of opportunities for females in the province so that they could further excel. He tweeted: “Truly an inspirational video package from Balochistan. Pakistan is better off when its girls show their resolve to make a mark in life. Educated, skilled & fearless daughters are the future of a thriving Pakistan. What they need is an opportunity to excel. More power to them!”

Pak-China ties

Meanwhile, PM Sharif has said the iron-clad ties between Pakistan and China will reach to new acme of bilateral cooperation, trust and affinities.

In a message on the 71st anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two neighbours, the PM felicitated Chinese President Xi Jinping, the governments and the people of both countries. He said that Pakistan and China were brotherly countries, the PM Office media wing said in a press release.

“Today has been a day when the two countries established diplomatic ties. The seeds of friendship during last 70 years have now grown into a strong and fruit-bearing tree,” he added.

Referring to the recent terrorist activity in Karachi, the prime minister said they saluted the Chinese brothers and sister who laid down their lives and expressed his condolence with the bereaved families. He resolved to eliminate the elements involved in such crimes.

The PM also said CPEC had laid the foundations to efface poverty from the region, foster economic cooperation, and regional connectivity, and bring stability. Also, the PM tweeted: “Our relationship with China has transformed into Iron Brotherhood over last 71 years. This comprehensive strategic partnership has stood test of time and emerged as a factor of stability in the region & beyond. My congratulations to the govts & the peoples of both the countries.”

Published in Dawn, May 22nd, 2022

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