‘Shisham trees facing threat of extinction in Pakistan’

Our Correspondent
Saturday, Apr 13, 2024

LAHORE: Pakistan Furniture Council (PFC) Chief Executive Officer Mian Kashif Ashfaq Friday cautioned that the number of Shisham trees has dwindled to a dangerous level due to rampant deforestation, illegal logging, and habitat destruction.

Chairing a board of directors meeting here on Friday he informed that Shisham trees, also known as rosewood are facing a grave threat of extinction in Pakistan.

These magnificent trees, prized for their sturdy timber and beautiful grain, are integral to the country's ecosystem and economy, he added.

He said one of the primary reasons for decline is the high demand for timber, both domestically and internationally.

It is a highly valued product due its durability and aesthetic appeal, making it a sought-after material for furniture, musical instruments, and decorative items but unfortunately, this demand has led to widespread exploitation of Shisham forests, often through illegal logging practices.

He said the expansion of agriculture and urbanisation has further encroached upon the natural habitats of Shisham trees, leaving them vulnerable to destruction.

‘Deforestation not only diminishes these trees but also disrupts the delicate balance of the ecosystem, leading to soil erosion, loss of biodiversity, and adverse effects on climate patterns,’ he added.

He said that concerted efforts are needed at both governmental and societal level to save Shisham forests.

Strict enforcement of forestry laws and regulations is essential to curb illegal logging and protect Shisham forests from further degradation.

He said effective initiatives should be undertaken to promote sustainable forestry practices and reforestation efforts to replenish depleted Shisham populations.

Mian Kashif said that effective awareness campaigns among the public about the importance of preserving Shisham trees and their ecosystems is need of the hour.

“Through this practice, the ecological significance of these trees and the adverse consequences of their decline on biodiversity, climate, and livelihood can be highlighted, he concluded.