IWMB serves closure notices to La Montana, recreational restaurants, Senate body told

ISLAMABAD, Feb 28 (Alliance News): The Senate Standing Committee on Climate Change on Monday was informed that the Islamabad Wildlife Management Board (IWMB) has served notices to La Montana and all other recreational restaurants for closure to preserve nature and conserve the National Park.

The Senate Committee chaired by Senator Seemee Ezdi, discussed the concerns on growing trend of fire in the Marghalla Hills National Park, took insight of the compliance of the recommendations made by the Committee since its formation and to discuss the budgetary proposals for Public Sector Development Program (PSDP) for the financial year 2022-23.

The committee was informed that in compliance of the recommendations of the Senate Committee on Climate Change, the draft amendments in the Forest Act, 1927 by the Forestry , Wildlife and Fisheries Department, Government of the Punjab, had been approved by the Provincial Cabinet. The committee expressed concerns on growing trend of fire in the Margalla Hills.

Chairperson IWMB Rina Saeed Khan and Capital Development Authority (CDA) official informed the committee that meetings were being coordinated with the Director General Environment and Wildlife Management to devise a plan for the prevention of fire in the Margalla hills in the coming seasons. The CDA official informed that measures would be taken to prevent fires in the area.

He said the PC -1 was approved for the procurement of machinery and equipment for prevention of fire. The official also apprised the committee that the fire prevention plan would be aided by the fire fighters from the local community and the rangers. The Chairperson IWMB informed the committee on the issue of littering at the Margalla Hills, Islamabad.

It was informed that the littering issue could only be resolved through on spot fines. “Charges on the littering at present are done through the magistrate, the process makes it impossible to fine charges on time,” stated the Chairperson IWMB.

The chairperson informed that the Nature and Wildlife Management Act had been drafted which would give powers to the rangers for on spot fine on littering. The committee was also informed that in the light of the judgment of the high court no construction would be allowed in the National Park and would solely serve the purpose of education and promotion of wildlife.

The committee was also informed that these hotels and restaurants were also a source of contaminating the water. The CDA official informed that sewerage treatment plants for non-operational for 10 years in I-9 sector.

The CDA officials also informed that a solar Panel has also been gifted to Pakistan by China since 10 years which was also non-functional. The committee showed its grave concern over the non-functional solar plant and sought details over the matter.

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