CHITRAL: Commissioner Malakand Division Riaz Khan Mehsud on Thursday said Section 144 has been imposed on cutting of trees in Chitral and from today if anyone violates the ban legal action would be taken against them.
Addressing a gathering of traders and others at a hotel in Chitral town, he said on the basis of an inquiry into a forest cutting case in Kalam Swat, legal action was initiated against two persons a few days ago while 22 officials of the forest department were suspended.
The commissioner said keeping in view climate change and its impacts on mountain communities, the protection of forest has become very crucial. It is the responsibility of the government as well as communities to promote forestry and discourage cutting of trees in Chitral.
He said forests were a national asset and anyone found trying to damage or misuse it would be dealt with in accordance with the law.
He also said the Shah Salim and Arandu borders with Afghanistan would soon be opened for trade and the business community and chambers of commerce would be taken on board to take full advantage from the cross-border trade.
Chitral Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Sartaj Ahmed Khan said Chitral is gifted with plenty of water, forests and mineral resources and by exploiting these we can provide job opportunities and eliminate poverty.