Sunday May 28, 2023

Millions of trees burnt in forest fire near Taunsa Barrage

By Our Correspondent
March 12, 2021

MUZAFFARGARH: Chief Minister Usman Buzdar on Thursday took notice of fire broke out on Wednesday in Lashari Walla jungle here and ordered the local authority to expedite operation to extinguish the blaze by employing all necessary measures and resources.

The fire went uncontrollable on Thursday and its flames could be seen from far-off areas. Millions of trees were burnt to ashes, posing severe life threat to indigenous animals, eyewitnesses said. The fire started in the largest jungle of Southern Punjab at western brink of Head Taunsa Barrage stretched around 5,000-km long terrain, for undeclared reasons. Flames of fire were increasing with strong wind in the area.

The jungle was also abode of millions of migratory birds, besides a gigantic source of oxygen for the entire Southern belt. Fire brigades, civil defence and Rescue 1122 could not initiate rescue activitiesyet for the jungle was surrounded by river water. On the order of Deputy Commissioner Eng Shouaib Khan Tareen, Kot Addu Assistant Commissioner Fiaz Ali Jatala said the fire could only be put out through an aerial operation.

He said rescue operation could not be initiated on account of blockage of ground channels by the river water. On the other hand, locals have suspected rivalry of two indigenous political families who wanted to control jungle, as reason for the fire. It is worth mentioning that similar fire had erupted in the jungle fortnight ago, leaving trees worth millions of rupees burnt to ashes in almost 200 acres area with dozens of cattle died on the spot.