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The overdue Qaqlasht project

A.M. Khan

The project of bringing the Qaqlasht plateau under use is long overdue. It includes channelizing water from Terich through Mulkhow, which had been under construction once in the past. Indeed, the channelization of water has multiple benefits to reap.

Without further delay, the government, advocated and supported by local, provincial and national representatives, needs to bring this only vast terrain into its agenda of regeneration and development for the larger interest of the people of Upper Chitral.

Water in the Atahk canal falls from a height and can be siphoned into Qaqlasht in abundance for cultivation and drinking purposes. As said Qaqlasht has around 75,000 acres of land and is much suited for establishment of educational and healthcare facilities, grounds for sport, halls, markets, hotels and restaurants, nurseries, forests, a zoo and parks.

Already the headquarters of Upper Chitral, Booni is inadequate for needed space for institutional settings, offices and public facilities for improved service delivery. The newly-established district necessitates the very physical infrastructure and other facilities for government and civil society entities. 

The channelization of water will also reduce the water inflow into Chitral River, minimizing the damages from its overflowing and flooding.   

The generation of electricity from this water will be sustainable and secure, given the area and its topography, that can be added either to the local or national grid. There are many other sustainable and potential water bodies in different streams (gols) of Chitral suitable for generating hydel power of up to 30,000 megawatts. The loss of this potential needs to be tapped as early as possible. 

Secondly, a university is but a very need of the area which needs an open, secure and accessible space. Qaqlasht plateau remains to be an ideal place for it in Upper Chitral.

Almost every department in the new district of Upper Chitral is operated either in a limited space or rented building. This not only creates the problem of space in the offices but also puts an extra burden every month on the government in terms of rent payments. Only the amount paid for monthly rents would be quite enough to cover the running budget of these offices other than their mandated/targeted works.

There is as such no space or spot accessible for the people of Upper Chitral away from human settlements for outings, sporting and recreations. Qaqlasht is a model place for parks, playgrounds, zoo, restaurants and other facilities of recreation to outsource domestic and international tourism.

Bringing the Qaqlasht plateau under use for the common benefit of the area is about regeneration and development. Establishing educational and health facilities, ground for sports, halls, markets, hotels and restaurants, nurseries, forests, zoo and parks, among others, not only benefits all but also helps deliver public services efficiently. 

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1 Comment
  1. Shah Karez says

    75000 acres appears to be exaggerated statement regarding the total area of Qaqlasht, the source of this information is required to be mentioned.

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