Wednesday, February 6, 2008
1. Arundinaria falcata in the NW Himalayas at 1,200-2,000 m. It occurs in the undergrowth in forests of oak, firs and mixed trees, usually on northern slopes or in ravines. It is part of a wider gene pool through the Himalayas. It is used for making baskets, mats and pipes.
2. Bambusa bambos. It is rare in the Ravi river eastward. It is absent in the hills. This species is extensively used for construction.
3. B. multiplex in the plains of Punjab is a hedge bamboo, as in India; originally introduced from China. It has the potential to reach 2,000 m.
4. Dendrocalamus strictus. In Punjab and Kashmir. It is found also in mixed vegetation on Marghalla hills surrounding Islamabad. It is used for construction and a variety of purposes. This forms part of a gene pool extending across Hindustan and usually growing below 1,200 m. In Pakistan, the resources are shrinking.
Historically, after the splitting of Pakistan in 1971, the Forest Department and also progressive farmers introduced bamboos from India, Bangladesh and elsewhere, and plantations were established in Punjab. However, post harvesting and processing was poor and prices fell after 1980 so most plantations were uprooted.
There is a need to assess the existing diversity, introduce additional productive forms and conserve representative stands.
By Zahoor Ahmad
National Agricultural Research Council (NARC), Islamabad, Pakistan
Cultivation of bamboo crop
The boy, barely 12-year-old, while playing in the fields near his home with four other fellows, was nibbled into pieces by a pack of seven hungry wolves who had descended from the overlooking hills, due to intense cold. The traumatised children, while narrating the incident, said that when they saw the wolves, they ran towards a nearby house but the ill-fated boy lagged behind and met his fate.
When the children cried "wolf", some of the villagers rushed to the spot with guns and sticks but by then the wild animals had fled leaving only shreds of the boy.
CHITRAL, 01 Feb 08: From Dawn.
Monday, February 4, 2008
A MYSTERIOUS VOICE
At dawn thus echoes a voice beyond sky,
How you lost the essence of ken(1) and pry.
The knife of thy hunt(2) how you made blunt,
The shining stars why you could ne’er hunts(3).
To thy heritage, goes the caliphate,
Can flame be tied to tuft and hays fate.
The stars, sun and moon thy slaves are not why,
From thee shivers not, why not the whole sky.
That blood still runs in thy veins though,
No heat of thoughts nor a smashing dash(4) so.
A lucent eye though, but lacks seeing sense,
The eye which lacks a holy guide’s glance.
No longer looks now thy crystal conscience,
O prey of king’s an mullah, and Pir’s(5) guidance.
2. Hunt; here it means research.
3. Hunt; prey.
4. Smashing (thought), andeshah-i-bae leak (fearless).
5. Pir; a spiritual guide (Peeri (Per: )
A SELECTIVE VERSE RENDERING OF