Approx. 100,000 Mango trees cut down to pave way for DHA Multan
Recently, more than 90,000 mango trees were cut down in Multan to make way for the prestigious Defence Housing Authority (DHA) project in the city. Netizens have been fuming ever since the news hit the media.
DHA is not the culprit
According to a report by BBC Urdu, it is stated that the culling of mango orchards took place last year. Multiple videos of the cutting down of trees were recorded and posted online. However, the issue didn’t garner much traction at the time.
Sources state that the trees were chopped but not for the military-run locality DHA. Instead, the City Housing Society near Bosan Road was behind the shocking act.
Multan & Massacre of Mangoes pic.twitter.com/0b2K8s27rK
— Rauf Klasra (@KlasraRauf) March 22, 2021
Happy DHA in Multan. Who cares about Mangoes 🥭 pic.twitter.com/4EzVhOzaZF
— Modern Day Slave (@Laiba_Zainab) March 18, 2021
Decimated mango trees from Multan’s world famous mango orchards, via @DrOsamaSiddique
Probably cleared to pave way for DHA.
It takes 20 years for a mango seedling to grow into a tree. This is an extremely tragic picture. pic.twitter.com/iS5EBhyMsl
— Ali Aqa Gardezi (@SyedAliAqa) March 18, 2021
Satellite images of the northern approach to Multan. The green boxes represent tracts of agricultural land, the black areas are mango orchards, and the white spaces show the land that has been cleared for housing purposes | #DawnGIS@Xadeejournalist @arifanoor72 @SyedKhawarmehdi pic.twitter.com/wufu2zn06Y
— Muhammad Toheed, Urban Planner (@UrbanPlannerNED) March 22, 2021
Mango Growers demand a ban on tree culling
Following the horrifying act, the Mango Growers Cooperative Society has demanded that officials impose a complete ban on mango orchard cutting. The growers were perturbed by the rapid annexation of thousands of acres of mango plantation in the district.
Authorities get involved in the matter
The viral tree-culling videos on the internet have attracted the attention of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and other activists and senior journalists. The political party has expressed grave concern over reports of denuding mango orchards and conversion of them into the urban property over the past years by DHA. They have now sought a transparent inquiry into the matter.
PPP secretary-general and former senator Farhatullah Khan Babar said in a statement:
Reckless conversion of mango orchards and farmlands into an urban property will have a disastrous impact on agriculture, food security and the environment. Food security is far more important than building housing authorities.
While the political parties have officially begun a probe into the matter, only time will tell whether the inquiry proves fruitful or not. The news is a solemn reminder to Pakistanis to plant more trees and take care of natural vegetation to prevent the country from falling into an environmental crisis.
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