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Showing posts from August, 2002

Gilgit-Baltistan: Central Asia of Pakistan - I

Gilgit-Baltistan: Central Asia of Pakistan-I   (The writer derived from his publication in The Nation dated August 30, 2002) Syed Shams ud Din Undeniably, hydel power is being considered the cheapest source of energy after solar energy hence any country having immense hydro-electric prospects of hydroelectric-power generation may attain unimaginable progress provided these resources are harnessed prudently. We in Pakistan, despite being endowed with gigantic water resources, lamentably run short of the direly needed energy. Resorting to another means of energy not that much cost-effective has not simply failed to yield any tangible results for economic sheer reasons. Even strivings made all along in the past in the context hydro-power projects resulted in various controversies and political bickering of this kind or that disregarding the prime national imperatives. What instead was needed then   was a coherent national policy to be consistently and pragmatically pur

"SEABUCK THORN" - Nature's multi-purpose gift

‘Seabuck thorn’    -    Nature’s multi-purpose gift    (Published in The Nation dated September 12, 2002) By  Syed Shamsuddin   The ‘seabuck thorn’ fruit contains a great potential of vitamin C which is said to be five to 16 times more than any other fruit. It is being used widely in China, Russia and Pakistan for making fast foods, jams, jellies, juices and toffees etc. The oil from the seed of this plant is qualitatively super which contains 80 per cent non-freezing substance out of which 60 per cent Linoleic Acid is found. Vitamin E too is found excessively in addition to other invaluable ingredients to keep human beings healthy. “Seabuck thorn’ oil can reach the most delicate tissue membranes of human body to regulate blood circulation. It thus exercises a rejuvenating effect on the skin becoming conducive to lend longevity, to put it succinctly. kin-furrowing thus gets slowed with its use. ‘Seabuck thorn’ creams and other cosmetics are gett

Mountain Agriculture in Gilgit-Baltistan-I

Mountain Agriculture in Gilgit-Baltistan-I   (Published in The Nation dated   August 10, 2002) By  Syed Shamsuddin   Verily, nature has been bounteous in the G-B. Its munificence becomes evident from the phenomena all across this region – be it the gigantic water towers giving a lease of life to the dwellers of the plains in the south, skyscraping peaks attracting the world tourists and climbers – abundant mineral wealth ranging from precious and semi-precious stones to the finest quality of gold. Its azure lakes, rivulets – what and what not that enrapture those who find a chance to have a bird’s eye view. To state precisely, the region has the history, been attracting   explorers, tourists of all hues – climbers, trekkers, and those fond of hiking in mountainous regions. These amazing natural phenomena together, constitute a stupendous mountain ecosystem, beyond any exaggeration. To top them all is the astounding potential of its soil that according to latest

Education Models in Northern Areas

Education Models and Northern Areas: Comment Published in DAWN dated August 8, 2002 By  Syed Shams ud Din Quality education is vital to progress because lack of it creates distortions in society. It, therefore, forms the bedrock of societal development and this is more importantly so in the case of a backward people. In the Northern Areas, the history of education is quite chequered and warped in that the facility here had been non-existent before the liberation of these areas. Then, getting education was practically unthinkable. There was not a single secondary school across the whole region though there were a few primary schools, with one or two middle schools. Nevertheless, education beyond this stage was non-existent. Thus a very few would embark on the onerous task of traversing all the way from Gilgit or Skardu to Srinagar for getting what was then called the higher education, ie secondary school stage. With the liberation of Northern Areas, a new era dawned

Mountain Agriculture in Gilgit-Baltistan- II

Mountain Agriculture in Gilgit-Baltistan- II (Published in The Nation dated   August 1, 2002) By  Syed Shamsuddin As far s agriculture department is concerned, the same is reportedly engaged in supplying certified-pest-free potato seed for cultivation in collaboration with the ‘seed certification department’ Gilgit. As emanating from a report published here recently, they have established a number of stores all across the region – in places like Gilgit, Skardu, Ghizer, Chilas and Gojal. The seeds as they claim, are supplied at subsidized rates to the farmers.The current research work as they assert, would soon get broadened when deck are cleared for building more such ‘Complexes’ in Skardu, Ghizer, Chilas which tremendously be profitable for giving a genuine boost to ‘mountain farming’. According to an estimate, potato cultivation across the country is being made over an area of one lac hectares (20 lac kanals) for which 30 ton potato seed is needed annually. Since the pota

Gilgit Paying Price For Indiscriminate Urbanization

Gilgit paying price for indiscriminate urbanization (The Nation dated August 1, 2002) Syed Shams ud Din URBANISATION, when it occasions haphazardly without any town planning remaining on the anvil, takes its tolls. The dwellers of such massive human concentrations have to face an infernal state unless remedial measures are taken for doing away with such appalling state. Gilgit city today seems to be the total antithesis of what it was some three decades ago when it lay in its pristine, glorious state free of any pollution. The existing two grand water canals called ‘dalejas’ in the vernacular, carried pure potable water which was also used for irrigation purposes by the inhabitants to get the erstwhile agrarian activity going. There were verdant fields all around that owed their greenery to the abundant water flowing from the adjoining Kargha nullah. All around the periphery of each and every farmland, wild plants and flora grew in abundance. Even the water-logged area o