ISLAMABAD - The National Disaster Man­agement Authority (NDMA) has so far treated total 538,100 hectares of area dur­ing the ongoing locust control operations in the vulnerable districts of the country.

According to NDMA spokesman, the authority has carried out spray of over 346,000 hectares of area un­der locust attack was man­aged in last 24 hours.

Some 1,129 teams were engaged in the locusts con­trol operation in the vulner­able districts.

The teams carried out both aerial and ground spray of 7,600 hectare area of Balochistan, 600 hectare area of Khyber Pakhtunkh­wa and 500 hectare area of Sindh during the last 24 hours, he said.

The aerial spray of 170 hectare of land was carried out in Pishin.

The spokesman said a total of 46 districts, 33 of Balochistan, eight of Khy­ber Pakhtunkhwa and five of Sindh, had been hit by the locust swarms.

In Balochistan, Khuzdar, Awaran, Naushki, Chaghi, Gwadar, Athal, Ketch, Panjgur, Kharan, Vishk, Quetta and other districts have been hit by desert locust. In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa,Dera Ismail Khan, Tank, North and South Waziristan, Lakki Marvat, Karak, Aurakzai, Khyber and Khuram areas were affected with locust attacks.

No locust swarm were spotted in any area of Punjab during last 24 hours.

In Sindh the affected areas included Khairpur, Sukkur, Matiyari, Kamshoro and Sha­heed Benazirabad.

Meanwhile, a part from as­sisting Pakistan in its fight against the COVID-19 con­tagion, the government of Japan, in collaboration with a Japanese non-governmen­tal organisation (NGO) and some private organisations, is all set to provide insecti­cide to Pakistan to support their efforts for combating the serious threats emanat­ing from the desert locusts attacks in the agricultural fields of the country.

To this effect, a Japanese NGO (CWS-Japan) will hand over 58 kilo liters of insecti­cide “Lambda Cyhalothrine EC 2.5” to the National Disas­ter Management Authority (NDMA) through the CWS-Asia, partner NGO of the CWS-Japan this month to combat desert locusts.

In addition to this, CWS-Ja­pan will also extend support to the Pakistani farmers who have been affected by the desert locusts invasion, said a news release of Japanese em­bassy here on Tuesday.

In this backdrop, Ambas­sador of Japan to Pakistan MATSUDA Kuninori Tuesday visited the NDMA and held a meeting with its Chairman Lieutenant General Muham­mad Afzal to express Japan’s commitment to support the government of Pakistan and its people for minimizing the damage caused by des­ert locusts.

During the meeting, the ambassador informed the NDMA chairman about the upcoming support from Ja­pan to Pakistan through a Japanese NGO CWS-Japan.

The ambassador said the damage being caused by the desert locusts to crops and other agricultural products was a serious problem not only in Pakistan but also in other South Asian countries which faced similar situation and that plague was becom­ing an imminent threat to the world’s food supply.

Ambassador MATSUDA further said in the midst of intensifying impact of coro­navirus pandemic on health, it was imperative to success­fully control the locusts in­festation in order to secure the livelihood and food se­curity of the vulnerable com­munities of Pakistan.

Realizing the seriousness of the issue and in light of a longstanding friendship between our two countries, the government of Japan, along with CWS-Japan, would support the people of Pakistan especially the farmer’s community bat­tling against desert locust swarms, he maintained.