CHI - The United Nation Development Programme funded project of "Conservation of Livelihood of Fisherfolk, Promotion and Conservation of Natural Resources of Sandspit" was inaugurated on Thursday.
Provincial Minister for Housing Department of Sindh Government Haji Muzaffar Shujrah formally inaugurated the project which aimed to protect the natural sea resources of mangroves at Kakapir village at Sandspit. The UNDP funded project to be implemented by Fisherfolk Development Organization Kakapir village is located at the suburb of Karachi. The objectives of this project was to promote eco-tourism through establishing floating huts and tower watch in Naen Channel which spreads 5 kilometers in sea, said Masood Ahmed Lohar National Coordinator GEF Small Grants Programme of UNDP in Pakistan.
Meanwhile, provincial minister, journalists and fishermen community activists during exposure visit of Naen Channel observed the increasing pollution of untreated effluents of industries in the city. Unveiling the highlights of project Masood informed that through this project eco-tourism would be promoted while floating huts would be introduced in a boat and a 30-feet tall watch tower would also be floated in the sea. The indigenous kitchen facility would also be displayed in floating huts, he said, informing that tourists could enjoy the natural scenes of sea.
"We will mobilize the fishermen community through this projects while fishermen who are the real owners of this natural resource, will protect and earn their employment from this fascinating tourism", he pointed out and proposed an underground fresh water flow to this Naen Channel to save the mangroves. The boat restaurants, huts and other facilities were also proposed in the project while models of these facilities were also displayed during launching ceremony of project.
The government should provide the flow of fresh water to mangroves or make responsible to industrial units to comply with the rules of Sindh Environment Protection Agency otherwise the marine life would be eliminated in next 10 years, UNDP National Coordinator observed.
The government should provide the access to the grave of Moriro to fishermen which is in the premises of PF Masroor Base, he stressed and offered that the UNDP would facilitate a "Moriro International Festival" at Moriro's grave.
Meanwhile, the UNDP can organize light and sound show at the grave which is our cultural asset, he said. Minister for Housing Haji Muzfar Shujrah addressing the launching ceremony assured that he will try to ensure access to fishermen to Moriro's grave. He also informed that 500 houses would be built in Thatta, Badin, Ibrahim Hydri and Kakapir village for fishermen free of cost.
However, an activist of Fisherfolk Development Organization revealed that more than 100 fishermen are the trained swimmers and they got training from a foreign agency. Before 2005, every year 40 to 50 people drowned in sea in this area while after the training of the swimmers this ratio had decreased to record level from 2006, he disclosed and urged that government should provide jobs to these trained swimmers. Dr. Akbar Shah of WWF, Haji Younas, Zubaida Bherwani, Ziaul Islam and others also spoke on this occasion.