CHITRAL: Director general of soil conservation department, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Yasin Khan has said efforts are being made to increase the area under cultivation in the hilly areas of Chitral by protecting the agricultural land from erosion, reclamation of flood-affected land and levelling the uneven tracts.
Speaking to a gathering of farmers at Garam Chashama in Lower Chitral, he said acute shortage of irrigation water had reduced per acre yield.
He said small dams and water channels were being constructed to bring under cultivation hundreds of hectares of arid land.
He said the department had so far carried out lining of hundreds of water courses in different villages of the district to reduce water wastage, while new methods of harvesting rainwater were also being introduced.
Mr Khan said community participation in all the projects had been ensured, adding to inculcate a sense of ownership among beneficiaries they were made to bear 20 per cent of the total cost of the project, which they did by providing local material, land and labour.
He said interventions of soil conservation would help reduce effects of climate change in the long-run.
Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf local leaders Shahzada Amanur Rahman, Mohammad Hussain and other community representatives appreciated the contribution of soil conservation department in promoting agriculture in the district.–Dawn