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KP govt all set to launch ‘Fruits for All’ Programme

PESHAWAR – The Khyber Pakthunkhwa Government has finalized an inclusive plan for launching of ‘Fruits for All” program to bolster fruits and horticulture industries in the province.

Provincial Minister for Environment, Forests and Wildlife, Syed Ishtiaq Umar told APP on Sunday that strategy for launching of this mega program was finalized and practical work on it will start by end of current month.

“Fruits for All Progam” is aimed at to create awareness about importance of fruits for human’s health, he said. First phase of “Fruits for All Program” would be launched in upcoming spring season from Peshawar, he informed.

He said around 1,75,000 fruits plants would be distributed free of cost among farmers, general public and Govt departments in Peshawar. It will be planted in posh areas of Hayatabad, Regi Lalama Township, Defense Colony, University Town and Motorway.

“It is a three years project and later would be expanded to other cities,” he said, adding all stakeholders including agriculturists, foresters, Govt officials, Â general public, NGOs, students, academicians, politicians, growers and LG representatives would be involved to make this program a success.

He said surrounding mountains near Peshawar were identified for new plantations that would add beauty of the Walled City besides counterbalancing effects of climate change and global warming in the region.

“Forest Department will carry out special plantation campaigns on barren ‘Basheywali Mountain near Hayatabad Peshawar under Billions Trees Afforstration Project (BTAP) to make it lush green besides making it a tourist resort to attracting foreign and domestic tourists,” he maintained.

He said an inclusive strategy has been chalked out under which soil would be thrown and spread on the said mountain before afforestration.

Ishtiaq Umar said bringing all barren and rugged mountains of the merged tribal districts under forestry cover was part of KP Govt plan and special focus would be given to it under second phase of BTAP.

The Minister said Government has chalked out a comprehensive mechanism to plant additional one billion saplings of different species during next five years in Khyber Pakthunkhwa.

“Massive afforstration campaign will be launched under BTAP across the province fom January 15, 2019 for which all preparations were completed,” he said.

BTAP are being extended to the merged tribal districts where tribal elders, Maliks, tribesmen, NGOs, students, politicians, religious scholars, Ulema Karam, civil society, Govt and semi govt organizations would be mobilized to bringing maximum areas under plantations cover.

The Minister said KP Forest Department was ready to provide technical assistance to all provinces including AJK and Gilgit Baltistan under ‘Plant for Pakistan’ initiative of Prime Minister Imran Khan under which 10 billion saplings would be planted during next five years in the country.

“We had achieved significant experience under BTAP model as it would not only help KP but other province and AJK as well to achieve set targets under Plant for Pakistan,” he said.

He said Pakistan was gifted with different climates and plantations in accordance to weather conditions and climates besides selection of seeds would play key factors to make the national program a success.