BAHAWALPUR, July 15: The Lal Sohanra Park will be upgraded to an international standard park to make it safe haven for wildlife and attractive for local and foreign tourists, MPA Zulfiqar Ali said while speaking at a press conference here on Tuesday.

The MPA said the step was being taken after reports emerged that the national park was being neglected and it also lacked necessary facilities for visitors and tourists.

He said immediate measures should be taken to preserve the wildlife, its breeding and promotion along with the preservation of environment.

In addition, he said the wood of Lal Sohanra forest should be utilised to set up a paper mills, as raw material was available in abundance there.

He said that during last Punjab Assembly session, he had also presented this proposal to the government, as the establishment of the paper mills would provide employment opportunities to the youth.

He said that Chief Minister (CM) Shahbaz Sharif during his recent tour to the city also wanted visiting Lal Sohanra Park but due to indisposition, he could not attend the briefing of the tourism department at the park.

The MPA said that had the CM visited the park, paper mills proposal could have been given due consideration beside other decisions to improve the park’s affairs. He hoped that during the next visit, the CM would be able to give some time to examine various proposals aimed at improving the park’s image.

MPA Ali said that since the Bahawalpur region was a wheat and cotton-growing area, an industrial zone with exclusively agro-based industrial concerns should be established here to promote agricultural industry and eliminate unemployment.

He said civic facilities in the city would be improved besides revamping the Bahawal Victoria Hospital to accommodate maximum number of patients.

He assured that the institute of neuro-sciences would be brought back to Bahawalpur from Lahore.

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