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KP govt to specify part of uplift schemes for plantation

KP govt to specify part of uplift schemes for plantation

PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has decided to allocate specific portion of all development schemes in the province for plantation and horticulture purposes.

The planning and development department on Monday issued a notification declaring, “The competent authority is pleased to approve in future, funds at rate of 1 and 0.5 per cent of total cost of the project will be allocated for the purpose of horticulture works/plantation in each development schemes in the province urban and rural areas respectively with immediate effect till further orders.”

It added that the executing agency should ensure that that the funds are allocated at an initial stage in order to ensure that horticulture works are completed within the project cycle.

“Funds shall be utilised/transferred to Peshawar Development Department in case of Peshawar district, local areas authorities, concerned office of the local government department and forest department, in none of the above exists, in a sequential preference for utilisation in horticulture works and plantation,” it said.

Official says initiative will be permanent feature of ADP

The notification said the measure might be adopted in letter and spirit to ensure the cities are green and beautiful and no one encroaches upon the government land.

It added that horticulture work would be carried out in such a manner that the same should not be damaged during the execution phase of the project, while the plantation should be seasonally resistant and environment friendly so that sustainability features of the same was intact in the best public interest.

Additional chief secretary Shahab Ali Shah told Dawn that the plantation and horticulture work would be a regular feature of PC-1s approved for all development projects from now on.

Mr Shah said one per cent of the project cost in urban areas and half per cent in rural areas would be allocated for plantation.

He said the plants to be planted in each area would be of local species and jointly decided by the agriculture and forest departments.

The ACS said the upkeep to plantations would be the responsibility of the relevant tehsil municipal administrations (TMAs) in cities and that of relevant departments in districts.

He said the initiative was going to be a permanent feature of the Annual Development Programme.

Syed Tariq Shah, a divisional forester and urban afforestation expert with the forestry department, termed the decision a tremendous step towards the government’s green growth initiatives.

He told Dawn that no such thing was part of urban planning in the past and that the initiative was really appreciable.

The expert said spending one or half per cent of project cost in case of schools or buildings was a really good thing but the sum appeared to be little less in case of road projects where for plantations along on road medians required PC-1s.

The last government (2013-18) had launched the Billion Tree Tsunami Afforestation Programme, which was highly appreciated globally due to increasing green cover of the province. The programme has been replicated by the current federal government under the 10 Billion Tree Tsunmi Afforestation Programme during its tenure in the entire country.

Published in Dawn, September 23rd, 2021

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