The government of AJK has decided to provide one-time free LPG cylinder and stove to every household near the forests. It is an incentive to avoid cutting forests.
AJK government took this decision at a meeting in Muzaffarabad today (Feb 8). And Azad Kashmir Prime Minister Sardar Abdul Qayyum Niazi chaired this meeting.
The Minister for Forests Akmal Sargala, Chief Secretary Shakeel Qadir Khan, Secretary Forests and other concerned officials also attended the meeting. Moreover, The meeting reviewed the performance of the department for 6 months.
The meeting briefed that citizens should be encouraged to use alternative gas instead of burning wood and deforestation can be stopped. The meeting also decided to launch an awareness campaign to save forests from fire
According to the details of this project:
The free LPG cylinder and stove project will complete at a cost of 200 million Pakistani rupees.
The meeting made number of decision. These included the following:
- In the next financial year, AJK government will computerize forest records and forest lands at the cost of 80 million rupees.
- AJK government will launch Ecotourism at a cost of 100 million rupees.
- They will also soon start 8 new development projects costing 600 million rupees in the region.
- They set the target to grow another 50 million saplings in the next 6 months.
- The Forest Department has set a target of Rs 600 million for revenue.
- Fisheries also decided to set up fish farms under public-private partnership for fish farming across Azad Kashmir.
The Forest Department has achieved revenue target of Rs 174 million. The remaining target of Rs 426 million is set to be achieved in the next 6 months.
The forest department has also stopped encroachment and occupation of forest lands and handed over 602 acres of land.
Address of PM of Azad Kashmir in Muzafrabad
“Forest department should come forward and plan for eco-tourism to promote eco-tourism in Azad Kashmir. The Billion Tree Project and Ecotourism are the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan. The Government of Azad Kashmir will provide all the resources for his success. Occupation of forests will not be tolerated under any circumstances Forest department should come forward and plan for eco-tourism to promote eco-tourism in Azad Kashmir,” said PM of AJK Sardar Abdul Qayyum addressing a media conference.
PM AJK Abdul Qayyum Niazi also said:
“We will make no compromise on protection of forests. We need to adopt viable and effective strategy to prevent timber smuggling and forest fires. The forest department should fulfil its responsibilities for the success of this project.”
PM AJK also directed:
“Public participation in tree planting and tree planting should be ensured and the forest department should make its nurseries functional as well as ensure supply of trees to the people. The department should take effective and fruitful measures to stop deforestation.”
PM AJK also said:
“The department should make the tender process for the lease of forests 100% transparent and before the tendering of the lease. The department should appoint a dutiful officer who would not allow any loss to the department or the state during the lease.”
PM AJK also said:
“The Billion Tree Project and Ecotourism are the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan. The Government of Azad Kashmir will provide all the resources for his success. “
Previously in the last 6 months, the forest department have planted 42 million saplings in the nurseries.
Block protection has been provided for protection of 4.7 million trees during six months while block protection of another 73 million trees is in progress. Forest department seized 3,574 cubic feet of timber during operations against timber mafia.