IWMB to launch strict action against tourists, visitors bathing in Margalla’s springs

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The Islamabad Wildlife Management Board on Monday decided to launch strict action against the tourists and visitors for bathing in freshwater springs that got filled after massive monsoon rains and helped replenish the depleting ecology.

The IWMB forest guards during their routine patrolling spotted many families including men, women and children bathing in springs of Trail-5 that had attained maximum water level in its dried and abandoned springs after a prolonged dry spell. An IWMB official told media that the tourists and seasonal trekkers were showing irresponsible and disrespectful attitude towards the mother nature and pristine ecology of the Margalla Hills National Park (MHNP) that was protected after many preservation efforts.

The tourists believed to be at the trails to beat the heat by bathing in freshwater springs that were a source of pure water for humans and wildlife alike and the practice of polluting it was equally detrimental for all.

The recent abnormal torrential rains that had lashed out almost all of the country had also showered record rainfall in the national park that overflew its dry freshwater springs, he added.

Hills National Park homes rich biodiversity and ecology spreading over an area of 17,000 hectares facing serious risks due to wild fires, arson, poaching, hunting and tree cutting.

The threat of deforestation, poaching, hunting have been controlled through the preservation and protection measures by the IWMB through public and community mobilisation and it also assisted in increasing green cover in the protected area.

The official added that the conservation efforts had also improved vegetation on the hiking trails and across the national park that replenished the aquifer of the Margalla Hills. “Water level has improved specially at Trail-6 where all water springs are filled with water stretching over some three kilometers area. Trail-6 is also a leopard preserve zone which is not open for public and hence has unprecedented green cover and plants in the area.” The IWMB official underlined that the IWMB staff patrolling was improved in the National Park to control tree cutting, pollution, littering in the protected area and bathing in the freshwater springs.

 

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