124 Forest Fires Incidents Occurred This Year In KPK; Scorching Weather, Pyromaniac Attitude Responsible

124 forest fires incidents occurred this year in KPK; scorching weather, pyromaniac attitude responsible

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Forest Department Thursday said around 124 forest fires have been encountered during the ongoing year

ISLAMABAD, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 18th Jul, 2019 ) :Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Forest Department Thursday said around 124 forest fires have been encountered during the ongoing year.

According to Forest Department official, the weather this year had been unusually hot and dry which made the environment conducive for Chir Pine needles to catch fire which mostly caused fire eruption in Chir Pine forests.

"As many as seven people of the department have martyred in fire fighting operations last year where two have perished in recent encounters in Hazara Forest Division," the official noted.

He noted that most of the fires occurred as a natural phenomenon which was necessary for the growth of Pine Forests.

"Despite natural fire occurrences people in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa used to set forest at fire for merry making which is a pyromaniac attitude. Most of the private landowners are also putting the forest at fires to remove impalatable species which aggravates fire resultantly caught by the nearby state forests," he added.

The Forest law under the British rule had bounded the local community to help the department in case of forest fires and assist in extinguishing the process.

"The situation has been other way around as they not only watch the fire eruptions as mere spectators rather do not cooperate in apprehending the culprits.

However, if we succeed in so then the political interference let them at large which is quite discouraging for the department to counter the issue with maximum success," he mentioned.

Most of the forest area, he said in the province was rugged and difficult for the staff to approach during the fires, however, the department was still responding to the situation without any delay and hesitation within its available resources.

To a question, he said almost 140 forest fires had occurred across the province in 2018 which had caused many precious lives to Forest department and its trees. However, the trees burnt during recent forest fires were not more than 0.001 per cent of the total 1.208 billion plants plantation carried out under Billion Tree Afforestation Project.

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