Riaz Sohail, Khairpur Nathan Shah, Dadu[Heavy rains and subsequent floods have wreaked havoc in Pakistan during an unusually long monsoon. According to the authorities, more than three crore people may be affected by this flood.
Pakistan has appealed to the international community for an “immense humanitarian response” to devastating flooding that has killed at least 1,265 people.
Federal Planning Minister Ahsan Iqbal called for an “immense humanitarian response for 33 million people” affected by monsoon rains that triggered the floods.]
A man is carrying a dog in his armpit at the water-inundated Allahwala Chowk of Khairpur Nathan Shah, Sindh. When he asked a passing navy boat to take him along, they pointed at the dog and signaled no.
The man folded his hands and signaled back that he would not leave the dog alone.
In this completely submerged city where there are harrowing tales of human plight, there are countless animals that go unnoticed. But there are also stories to be heard and seen where people in trouble themselves tried to take care of stranded animals.
During a rescue operation in Khairpur Nathan Shah, when I went to Loond Mohalla, met Rafiq Ahmed, a disabled teacher. He told me that his neighbour, seeing the plight of the dogs, told his son to make a pot of rice and feed the dogs.These are also God’s creations.’
A woman and a youth were rescued near the college when the youth said that his brother went back to the submerged house to save his dog.
In Fatehpur, Mazhar Ali said that he is inside the house and his dog is keeping watch outside. They feed to the dog the leftovers of what they eat.
I found several dogs in the affected area which were skinny. Mazhar Ali also fears that these animals, suffering from hunger, are now compelled to bite.
Abandoned dogs were seen near many houses in the city. It was clear that they would not survive long if they did not have access to food. As a result there are also fears of spread of diseases in addition to contamination of dead dogs.
A young man, called Lahooti, was sitting in a rescue boat holding three pigeons.
I asked him why he did not release them, he replied that they are children, their wings are clipped, they cannot fly. If you leave them, the animals will eat them.
- Protective bunds under pressure posing threat to some major towns
- Villages in Matiari, Sujawal districts submerged in flood water
My second day at Khairpur Nathan Shah was also spent with a rescue mission. Many people were questioning where they will be accommodated as they don’t even have rent.
A booming boat business
Despite the announcement by Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah that there is no threat to Mehar and Johi city, people are migrating from the bypass area.
At night around half past nine, a Mazda mini truck carrying men and children was seen at a hotel near Dadu. They had come from Mehar town.
They said that the water level is rising, they don’t believe what the government is saying, so they migrated.
A truck carrying of residents of Boreri, a nearby settlement of Khairpur Nathan Shah and Sita Village, was seen. Thye told that there is an escape route but the water level is rising, so women and children have to move to a safer place.
After several areas including Shahdadkot, Qamber, Garhi Khairo, Khairpur Nathan Shah came under water, the business of boat transportation is shining.
Seeing a boat on a small Suzuki pickup, I asked where they had come from, the driver told that it was coming from Thatta, will go to Kambar and will run this boat on rent.
Saad Edhi is also present here. He told that in the recent rains, three boats of Edhi Foundation have broken in Balochistan and one in Malir river, Karachi.
He claims that such a boot is available from China for two and a half lakhs, while a tax of four lakh rupees is levied on it. Hence making it expensive.
If the government helps, more boats can be ordered which will facilitate the rescue.