Thursday December 07, 2023

Parliamentarians join volunteers for plastic waste clean-up at Shahdara

June 05, 2023

Islamabad: The Islamabad Wildlife Management Board (IWMB) and its dedicated volunteers on Sunday took members of the Senate Standing Committee on Climate Change to clean up plastic waste at a picnic spot in Shahdara Valley of the Margalla Hills National Park to highlight hazards of plastic waste in connection with World Environment Day. The IWMB along with its volunteers organised an awareness and clean up activity to kick start World Environment Day 2023 celebrations in the federal capital under this year’s theme "Solutions to Plastic Pollution" at one of the neglected spots of the Margalla Hills National Park and especially invited the Senate Committee members. Speaking on the occasion, Chairperson IWMB, Rina Saeed Khan said the activity was supported by the Board and it’s volunteers who were passionate about environmental conservation and protection. She said an overwhelming response has been received from the civil society to the Board’s awareness campaigns as number of youth and elderly have joined the awareness initiatives of the Board to protect nature and biodiversity.

“Shahdara Valley is part of Margalla Hills National Park but due to its remote location it was somehow neglected and the volunteers decided to initiate awareness activities from this picnic spot which has been littered by the tourists," she added. She highlighted that the volunteers were trained by Senior IWMB Member Dr. Z.B. Mirza on nature and biodiversity of the national park and it’s management and protection under the Eco-Guards initiative. There were over a hundred volunteers who used to communicate through WhatsApp group, she added. Khan informed that the Board members were working without any perks and salaries just to serve the nation and give the country back better. The government, she said had limitations and so the Board that it had only 40 staffers who could not alone manage the patrolling, protection and public awareness of over 17,000 hectares area. "This Board is a civil society-led organisation and had developed a civil society coalition for nature protection and preservation which has been very successful. Over 5,000 visitors come to the trials for hiking and trekking of the National Park,” she added. Chairperson of Senate Standing Committee on Climate Change Senator Seemee Ezdi said the activity was the right step to celebrate this year’s World Environment Day under the theme of Solutions to Plastic Pollution.