Malakand Commissioner orders Swat river’s beautification

PESHAWAR: Commissioner Malakand Division Syed Zaheer Ul Islam on Wednesday ordered beautification of River Swat and effective measures for curbing of illegal mining.

He passed these orders while presiding over a high-level meeting attended by Deputy Commissioners, officers of Mines and Mineral Development and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) KP at his office in Swat district.

The Commissioner reviewed various measures taken for removal of plastic waste, beautification of River Swat and stoppage of illegal mining in Malakand division. The meeting discussed various suggestions pertaining to bringing mining sector in line with the set Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).

Commissioner Malakand division directed the Deputy Commissioners concerned to collect data related to illegal mining in their districts and ensured implementation of SOPs for excavation and extraction of construction materials in interior of Swat River and floodplain areas.

Reviewing the issue of illegal crushing, Syed Zaheer-ul-Islam said action against illegal crushing plants should be intensified.

The Deputy Commissioner Swat said so far 23 crushing plants have been sealed and fines were imposed.

Deputy Commissioner Malakand Division informed that 14 crushing plants have been sealed in Malakand district.

Focusing on Swat River, Commissioner Malakand said Swat River was an identity of the district and its natural beauty would be restored to its original form and steps should be intensified in this regard. Encroachments on 99 different places on Swat River have been removed.

Commissioner Malakand Division said implementation of environmental regulations should be expedited by removing all obstacles to ensure natural flow of Swat River.