150-year-old date tree preserved
Statesman Report (4 Dec 2006)

PESHAWAR: A 150-year-old tree, which came under Soreypul road widening project has been preserved and shifted to a safe place because of joint efforts of the
Sarhad Conservation Network (SCN) and the Lady Reading Hospital, Peshawar authorities. 

The Date tree, approximately 127-foot high, grew along the central entrance of the Lady Reading Hospital. However, under the Soreypul road widening project, it was decided that the parameter wall along the central gate and a police checkpost located there was to be removed to expand the width of the main road connecting Khyber Bazaar to G. T. Road. The old tree also came under forced extinction as without its removal the road could not be widened at this point.

However, the
Sarhad Conservation Network and LRH authorities, however, took up the matter well on time. They decided not to cut down this natural inheritance of Peshawar but to preserve it some way. 

The SCN and LRH authorities later collaborated with the botanists of Tarnab Farm. An engineer, Suhail Shah arranged the lifting of this old tree with the help of cranes from its place of growth to another spacious place inside the LRH, thus preserving this unique natural inheritance of this historic city. 

Eminent Radiologist and a member of the SCN,
Dr. Murad Ali told that the Date tree was a part of historic wireless ground garden, which came into being on the remnants of Peshawar's oldest Shalimar Garden that faced ruination at the hands of Sikhs.

He stated that Shalimar Garden was also that historic garden about which the first British emissary to Peshawar, Elphinston had mentioned in his note to his government.

The British envoy had also paid a visit to the Shalimar Garden along with Afghan King Shah Shujah, he added. 

Dr. Murad Ali, on this occasion, emphasised the importance of trees in human lives. He said that preserving a tree was same as preserving the life of a human being. He said that the only way to meet the challenge posed by environmental hazards was to plant maximum number of trees. 

Dr. Janbaz Afridi, Dr. Mohammad Mukhtar, DMS Admn, LRH, Engineer Suhail Shah, Pervez Gul, Botanist, Gohar Zaman Nayyar, PRO, LRH and other concerned officials efforts for preserving the oldest Date tree of Peshawar were highly eulogised on the occasion.
(Statesman report - 12/04/2006)
Sarhad Conservation Network [email protected]
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