demands stop the ruthless cutting of forest in Arandu
CHITRAL: The office-bearers of Village Council Forum
Chitral, Sajjad Ahmed Khan, Naveed Ahmed Khan, Abdul Qadir Mehtar,
Fazlur Rahman, Sultan Muhammad Sher, Mujeebur Rahman and others
have demanded of the government to forthwith stop the ruthless
cutting of forest in Arandu Gol which is going on incessantly for
the last four months.
Addressing a press conference here on Sunday, they alleged that the
cutting of deodar trees in the forest of Arandu Gol is being done
at the behest of those in power who gave legal status to the
illegal timber and encouraged further harvesting.
They said that when the government was reported about the cutting
of thousands of illicit cut timber in the forest, those at the
helms of the affairs did not invoke the law to punish the culprits
but instead legalized it by the provincial cabinet as per which it
was decided to purchase the timber from them.
This decision acted as a catalyst to fell more and more trees and
the timber mafia accelerated the cutting of trees emboldened by the
policy put in place by the government and the process goes
unchecked for the last four months, they said.
They castigated the government for beating the trumpet of Billion
Tsunami Tree Plantation on one hand to regenerate the environment
but abetting the timber mafia to denude the forest of Chitral on
The village nazims also demanded of the government to allot the
illicit timber to the people of Chitral on subsidized rates who had
lost their houses to the devastating floods and earthquake of last
year and are now reconstructing them.