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    Spring tree plantation drive launched in Nangarhar

    JALALABAD(PAN): A spring tree-plantation driver was launched in eastern Nangarhar province by planting two ornamental trees on Sunday, officials said.

    More than 5 million of saplings would be planted in Jalalabad city and 22 districts of the province during the ongoing campaign until the start of new solar year (March. 21, 2012), deputy governor, Mohammad Hanif Girdiwal, told a ceremony marking the launch of the campaign.

    They would prevent forest-cutting process with the help of Afghan security forces in the province, he said, adding each individual should plant at least two saplings.

    Of the saplings, 5,142,000 have been produced by the agriculture department with the help of Nangarhar Valley Development Authority (NVDA), non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and owners of nursery farms.

    The saplings are being sold to people at 50 percent discount rate, the Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock director, Mohammad Husain Safi, told Pajhwok Afghan News.

    His department was looking after forests grown in Dara-i-Noor, Hisarak and Haska Maina districts and trees planted in Samarkhel area of Behsud district and Kama district in previous years, the director said in response to a query. “Gardeners and farmers have grown millions of plants they had purchased from us,” he said.

    The trees to be grown this year included 1,047,000 fruit-bearing, 3.2 million forest trees and 400,000 ornamental plants being provided to orchard owners in Abdulkhel area of Achin district, Chilgazi area of Spin Ghar district, Behsud and Sorkhrod districts, he said.

    He said they would also reduce the level of forest-cutting with assistance from the security personnel and locals.