Govt asked to either develop or denotify status of Broghil national park

Govt asked to either develop or denotify status of Broghil national park

CHITRAL, March 16: The residents of Broghil valley have demanded that the government should strengthen the national park in the area by providing it with necessary staff or denotify its status so that the local community could be able to carry out its preservation as per their centuries-old custom.

Broghil national park. Talking to this correspondent here, the president of village conservation committee (VCC) of Broghil, Umer Rafi, said the preservation of the rich biodiversity of the area was at stake as the department of wildlife had practically abandoned the area two years ago. He apprehended that after the area was connected with other parts of Chitral with the construction of a jeep track, the locality had become vulnerable to poachers.

He said that the Broghil National Park project was launched in 2008 when it was notified as a national park due to its ecological importance and its rich biodiversity. Mr. Rafi said that it was the largest national park in the province with an enormous area of 1348 square kilometers which bordered the Wakhan corridor of Afghanistan.

Counting some other peculiarities of the park, said that the area was the starting point of Indus Flyway which provided passage to the Siberian migratory bird in the course of their journey to the plains of Pakistan and India with the advent of winter season. He said that the park area has been declared to be one of the two hundred ecologically important geographic entities in the world which contained the active biological lake of Qurambar with 5 kms length and 3 kms width.

“The area also consists of thirty number of perennial natural lakes of varying lengths ranging from 1 to 3 km length”, he said adding that the area was adorned with peat lands, meadows, streams, waterfalls, ponds and above all, the Chiantar glacier which was the primary source of Chitral River.

He said that eighty three species of local birds have been recorded in the park area out of which three were said to be new comers in the area believed to have migrated from the Central Asian region and will be localized if they are not hunted for a couple of years.

The survey conducted by Pakistan Wetland Project and Snow Leopard Foundation in different time have established that the Himalayan ibex, musk deer, brown bear and wolf had a considerable population density in the area apart from snow leopard. Mr. Rafi said that the area was also the breeding ground of Marko polo sheep of two different species. He said that the project was not extended beyond June 2012 as the provincial government did not approve the schedule of new expenditure (SNE) to appoint permanent staff to manage the park.

The local VCC, he said, managed the salaries of two community watchers up to December last when all its resources were exhausted and their services could no more be continued with the result that the park is without a single staff to check poaching and ensure preservation. He regretted that after the winding up of the project, the department of wildlife seems to be totally indifferent to the national park as none of its officials has bothered to visit the area while the NGOs working for environment have also withdrawn from there.

Mr. Rafi has also appealed to the superior judiciary to take suo motu notice of the indifference of wildlife department and ensure posting of staff required for the management of the national park.–Zahiruddin

2 Replies to “Govt asked to either develop or denotify status of Broghil national park”

  1. Deeply disturbed to learn of this. Am heading the Green Growth Initiative in KPK and plan to protect and preserve the natural biodiversity of our national parks especially in KPK. PTI is committed to do that and inshallah we will. I will be looking into this issue personally and will also be visiting Chitral soon to initiate proper management of this unique National Park.
    If I can get any details of the SNE mentioned above that would be useful. How much was it and why did it finish off in 2012 – due to normal project closure or any other circumstance?

  2. Broghil National Park is one of the high altitude ecologically significance National Park in the world. The area is rich in cultural and biological diversity. The project was not extended beyond June 2012 as the provincial government did not approve the schedule of new expenditure (SNE) to appoint permanent staff to manage the National Park. But in the same year, the government of KP approved same SNE for Mardan Wildlife Division. I don’t know how the Wildlife Department and the political structure rationalize the occurrence of important wildlife species. The present condition of Broghil National Park is a a result of the apathy of the political leadership who have no interest in natural resources of Chitral and Wildlife Department is lacking motivation on the subject.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.