جولائی 1, 2014

Swiss mountaineers to scale #Tirich Mir - سوئس کوہ پیما تریچ میر کی اونچائی کی پیمائش کریں گے

A group of Swiss mountaineers photographed with local people in Chitral. — Dawn


CHITRAL (via Dawn): A team of four mountaineers from Switzerland will scale Tirich Mir, the highest peak of Hindkush range in upper Chitral, after a decade.

Talking to Dawn here on Friday, managing director of Tourism Corporation of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (TCKP), Mohammad Ali, said that the trekking team would spend about three weeks in the 47km long Tirich valley which contains meadows, low-lying glaciers and numerous fascinating views.

He said that the team comprised two male and two female members who had arrived in Shandur to see the polo festival, which concluded last week. He said that two more teams, one each of trekking and scaling Terich Mir peak, would arrive here next month.

Mr Ali said that the arrival of expedition teams to the picturesque Tirich valley had filled with joy the hearts of the local people as tourism in the area come to a standstill after the rise of militancy in Malakand division.

He claimed that TCKP had been making all out efforts to attract tourists to Chitral, which had congenial environment for tourism. He said that an expedition team of Russia would reach the valley by July end to scale the Tirich Mir peak, which is the highest peak in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Describing some of the efforts for promotion of tourism in the area, he said that the TCKP was going to arrange celebrations to mark the first scaling of the Terich Mir peak 65 years ago to attract more expeditions.

The peak was first scaled by a Norwegian team in 1950. Foreign expedition teams rush to the valley every summer to scale the peak. But the expeditions were stopped after the rise of Taliban in Malakand about a decade ago.

PRESERVATION OF BIODIVERSITY: Advisor to chief minister on environment Syed Ishtiaq Urmar has said that it is the local community in an area which plays effective role in preservation of biodiversity of that region, and Chitral can be cited as the region where local people have played a commendable role in preservation of rare species of Kashmir markhor from extinction.

Speaking on the occasion of giving cheques to different village conservation committees here, he said that the wildlife department gave 80 per cent of the trophy hunting fee to the community for their best conservation efforts.

He said that the wildlife department had organised the VCCs for conservation activities and they had successfully saved the population of markhor since 1980s.

Mr Urmar said that Chitral was blessed with rich variety of animals which must be conserved with the active participation of concerned communities so as to ensure sustainable management of wildlife in the province. He said that global warming and climate change was the result of irrational use of natural resources.

Mr Urmar said that the rich biodiversity of an area helped boost tourism, adding that tourists loved to see markhor in its natural habitat which was quite possible at Garam Chashma.

He asked the local community activists to judiciously utilise the funds for collective development of people to boost conservation process.

Syed Mubarik Ali Shah, chief conservator, provincial wildlife department, and Dr Mohsin Farooq, conservator wildlife north, were also in attendance.

Published in Dawn, June 28th, 2014

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