By GR Junejo
Mithi: In a major push for increasing green cover, Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company (SECMC) has announced a collaboration with HANDS Pakistan for the plantation of 20,000 saplings across Tharparkar. In this connection, a memorandum of understanding was signed between SECMC and HANDS Pakistan whereby SECMC will provide 20,000 plants to HANDS to increase the greening factor across Thar. The collaboration has been done under the larger Thar Million Tree Program initiative of SECMC and Thar Foundation which plans to plant one million trees in Thar. With the current agreement, the total count of trees stands around 800,000. The agreement was signed by Ahmed Muneeb, Head of Site Operations of Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company and Abdul Karim, Executive Manager HANDS Pakistan. As per collaboration between SECMC and HANDS, the different types of plants provided will be indigenous to Tharpakar while out of the 20,000 plants, approximately 10,000 plants will be planted in Thar Block II. SECMC and HANDS Pakistan will also be responsible for the continuous monitoring and supervision of these plants across the areas of the plantation. Speaking on the occasion, Ahmed Muneeb of SECMC said that the company was vigorously working for making the clean and green environment in district Tharparkar and specifically Thar Block II. He further elaborated, “We attach great importance to health, safety, and environment (HSE) initiatives. Keeping in view this approach, we have now partnered with HANDS Pakistan to expand the horizon of such activities and allow us to fulfill our program objective of planting 1 million trees across Thar.” Abdul Karim – District Executive HANDS Pakistan – also said. “The contribution of SECMC in the region through its various interventions has shown significant satisfaction among locals and made a really positive contribution in their lives. I am hopeful that this MoU will serve as an aid in combating desertification in the region by making it greener and more diverse.” Earlier SECMC established Sindh’s largest private sector nursery spread over 80 acres of land and having a capacity to nurture 0.5 million saplings at a time. The nursery has contributed saplings of different local species like Sarhain, Moringa, Bairi, Babur, Neem, and Kandi. The program is aimed at contributing to carbon footprint reduction and promoting a green and healthy environment in Tharparkar.