The trout fish hatchery in Shangla has been non-functional for the last four years after its water channel damaged in several points in Lilownai area of Alpuri tehsil in Shangla.
The north districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa are known for delicious trout fish where the fisheries department KP has established hatcheries in the different areas of Shangla, Swat, Chitral, Kohistan and other areas but the facility has been non-functional in the district Shangla since last four years.
Syed Sajid Shah, a local notable in Alpuri said that the hatchery was just few miles away from the district headquarters Alpuri where all four farms of the trout fishes were closed for four years.
“The previous Pakistan Tehrik-I-Insaf government has recruited more than two dozen employees for the hatchery and its water channel look after and they are receiving salaries at their homes but neither the fisheries department nor the district administration heeds to this issue,” He said and added that when the reconstruction work was started on the farms the trout fishes were shifted to Naran.
Fazal Haq, a local resident said they used to buy trout fish for their guests when it was functional because the taste trout has he never seen while having other species of the fishes.
He said the hatchery was demolished after it had developed cracks in the 2019 floods and yet to be reconstructed and abandoned incomplete by the contractor and fisheries department.
He further said that hatchery was playing a vital role in collecting revenue for the KP government tourism department as the trout main consumer was tourist who used to buy it from the hatchery.
The local residents said they wanted the government resume work on the abandoned trout fish hatchery and complete it reconstruction as soon as possible so that locals and tourist enjoy the delicious fish.
When the district officer fisheries contacted, he told this scribe that work on the farms had been completed, however the water channel which was damaged by the floods await reconstruction.
He said the project cycle had been done and submitted to the deputy commissioner office for approval to allocate funds for the reconstruction of hatchery water channel and he was hopeful that the hatchery would be made functional till December.