ISLAMABAD - Chairman of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bakir Izetbegovic, planted a sapling at Memorial Garden Shakarparian, on Tuesday afternoon as a memorial to his visit to Islamabad.
Federal Minister for National Heritage Samina Khalid Ghurki, Federal Minister for Communication Arbab Alamgir, Chairman CDA Syed Tahir Shahbaz, Member Environment CDA Dr Kazim Niaz and other senior officers are also present on the occasion.
Chairman CDA Syed Tahir Shahbaz and Member Environment Dr. Kazim Niaz briefed the visiting dignity about the making of Capital Islamabad in this region and tradition of planting trees at this memorial garden of Shakarparian where the Federal Cabinet met to approve the plan of the Federal Capital Islamabad. The Chairman CDA apprised that the tradition of foreign visiting dignitaries planting trees in a country is a unique in the World and the Capital Development Authority is planning to develop this place by making a gallery carrying the brief introduction and photographs of the dignities who planted the trees here.
The visiting guest was apprised that the tradition of planting tree at the Memorial Garden Avenue in Shakarparian, the practice began on February 21, 1964, when Zhou Enlai, the first Premier of the People’s Republic of China, sowed a seed of the Chinese Tallow Tree. Since then, more than 115 ceremonial trees have been planted there. This tradition does not take place anywhere else in the world.
Chairman CDA informed Bakir Izetbegovic that his father Izetbegovic also planted a tree in 1992 which has been grown up now. The visiting dignity also inspected the tree that Izetbegovic has planted here.
Chinese dignitaries have planted the most number of trees. They include former Vice Premier of the Peoples Republic of China Keng Piao in June 1978, former Prime Minister Zhao Ziayang in June 1981, former President Li Xiannian in March 1984, among others. The King of Saudi Arabia Faisal Bin Abdul Aziz planted a Chinese Tallow Tree back in 1966.
Among other known state guests were President of Republic of Indonesia General Soeharto who planted a Chir Pine in 1980, Head of State of Turkey General Kehan Evern in 1981, Prime Minister of Malaysia Dr Mahathir Bin Mohammad planted Chir Pine in 1984, President of Socialist Republic of Romania Nicolae Ceausescu planted a Chir Pine in 1984, and the ruler of Zimbabwe, Robert Gabriel Mugabe, who planted a Chir Pine in 1987.
Other former heads of state include President of Iran Hojjatoleslam Akbar Hashmi Rafsanjani, President of UAE and ruler of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al-Nahyyan, President of Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka Chandrika Bandaranike Kumaratunga, Sultan of Oman Qaboos Bin Said, Prime Minister of Lebanon Rafic Al Hariri and President of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai who planted the tree on December 27, 2007.
Bakir Izetbegovic also visited the famous Faisal Mosque this evening and offered prayer. Member Engineering CDA Sanaullah Aman briefed the visiting guest about the architecture and other details about the Faisal Mosque.
He was apprised that the mosque has the largest column less hall in the world and has the capacity to accommodate 10,000 pilgrims inside, where as the outer portions when fully occupied have the capacity of more than 100,000. He was informed that the mosque have been constructed with the assistance of the Saudi Arabia.