KARACHI: One of the largest public parks in the of the city, Hill Park, will be greener than ever, as the Aman Foundation planted 2,000 local trees, and 200 flowers at the park.
The two-day campaign, Shajare Aman, for a greener Karachi started on Wednesday where a large number of volunteers, officials and prominent personalities, such as cricketers Younus Khan and Anwar Ali, took part in the plantation drive.
Read: Working towards a ‘Hara Bhara Karachi'
"Trees, parks and the health environment are critical to the well-being of our city," said the Karachi commissioner and administrator, Shoaib Ahmed Siddiqui. He gave assurances that the parks and horticulture department of the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) will take care of the new plants, supporting the Aman Foundation's plantation drive.
Siddiqui said that a healthy environment creates healthy citizens and can aid in ridding bigger cities, like Karachi, of pollution.
Most local trees, such as Neem and Gulmohar, were planted as part of the plantation drive and, according to environmentalists, these indigenous trees are very important for the environment of the metropolis.
Aman Foundation's chief executive officer, Malik Ahmed Jalal, said that his organisation took action during the heatwave and set up six camps in different areas where 1,983 patients were treated. "A long-term solution requires increasing the plantation cover of Karachi to combat the effects of a future heatwave," he said. "Shajare Aman aims to protect and create awareness for our environment as a key aspect of our mission to transform lives in Pakistan."
The citizens want to plants new trees but, a volunteer said, there are no plantation activities and unfortunately there is no space left. He said that healthy activities are not being promoted and encouraged by public institutes.
The KMC officials already said that there is shortage of space for new plantations in the city. Sources said that different organisations have approached top officials of the KMC to identify some locations in the city where they could plants new trees.
Read: 100,000 trees to be planted in Karachi
The Aman Foundation officials say that the campaign will continue with the support of the KMC. The foundation's officials want to continue the campaign without a long delay. They said that the two-day drive was dedicated to Hill Park but more parks and locations have been identified by the KMC and will be made greener in the coming days.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 13th, 2015.
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