Recently Prime Minister Imran Khan Inaugurated Protected Areas initiative. Under this program there are 15 national parks including Handarap Shandur national park in GB. I wonder what this name stands for ? National park is technical term and it means protected habitat of unique flora and fauna. Handarap Shandur is misleading name. Handarap is not a natural habitat. It is a hamlet of 300 houses in Ghezar GB, with a human population of 3500 souls. There is a nala called Shonjo Gole. It is 27 Km long nala adjacent to Handarap with a beautiful lake, Lush green meadows and alpine forest. Shandur is name of a distant place in Khyber Pakhtun Khwa, which neither makes part of it’s Core area nor periphery. In view of the above the very nomenclature of the National Park is wrong. It must be renamed Shonjo Gole national park which is a natural habitat, not human settlement.
It would be pertinent to suggest that the initiative may be reviewed by technical people having basic know how of biodiversity and it’s conservation. National Parks is an advanced step of game sanctuary and game reserve and as such it must be planned through a team of experts in the field. The current scenario shows that this topic is under the grip of lay men among political circles. In order to make a viable technical project, the names of Handarap and Shandur may be deleted from the title name and it must be Shonjo Gole national park. .. by Dr. Inayat ullah Faizi, Chitral 18 Oct 2020