Nearly a third of Pakistan has been drowned by floods brought on by climate change-related rains, which have also disrupted the lives of more than 33 million people, resulted in at least 1,300 fatalities, damaged crops, wrecked 1.5 million houses, and killed 727,000 livestock. These floods have caused significantly more destruction than the floods of 2010, and they have shown that climate change will continue to have an increasing impact in the years to come.
The tragedy is drawing a huge response from the world community and friendly nations, who are sending aid supplies and money to Pakistan to help it deal with the crisis. After witnessing the extent of the devastation personally, the UN secretary general appealed to the international community to support Pakistan in its hour of need.
“We see here in Pakistan, nature is hitting back with deadly effects,” he remarked at the end of his two-day tour. Although I have witnessed several catastrophes, I have never witnessed climatic slaughter on this scale.
Additionally, he cautioned the international community that if action was not taken to address the problem of climate change, all nations would incur consequences that would beyond their ability for adaptation. Given the seriousness of the situation and the resources needed to mitigate the effects of the floods, he declared that he would vigorously support “debt swaps” with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank, allowing developing nations like Pakistan to use that money to invest in climate resilience, sustainable infrastructure, and a green transition of their economies rather than repaying loans to foreign creditors.
Similar thoughts were expressed by USAID Chief Samantha Power, who just announced an additional $20 million in help, increasing the total US contribution to $50 million. Ms. Power told the media that in her 30-year career, she had never witnessed floods and damage of this magnitude. She believed that the enormous sums needed for reconstruction would be difficult to mobilise, but the world community was willing to make any contribution it could given the devastating fallout this would have on the people of Pakistan.
It is anticipated that the recovery and rebuilding process would cost an extra $20 billion to Pakistan’s already-stressed economy, and that it will take years to accomplish. However, it is heartening to see that the administration, along with other state agencies, the military included, is leading the charge to lessen the suffering of the flood-affected populace.
In this aspect, the Pakistani Army appears to be in charge. The COAS is travelling to flood-affected districts, just as Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.
More than 25,000 individuals have been treated so far at 117 aid camps and 25 field medical camps set up by the army. It has given the affected people over 5,500 ration packs and 1,200 tents.
The Inter-Services Public Relations reports that 50 boats and 7,522 army personnel have been dispatched for rescue and relief operations. Helicopters are also being used by the army to rescue individuals and give out food to those who are stuck in the impacted regions.
With a mandate to coordinate rescue and relief activities in collaboration with army-level partners, the Army Flood Relief Coordination Centre was formed under the Army Air Defence Command. To coordinate the operations for the collecting and distribution of relief supplies, national collection stations have been set up.
In addition to assistance from the international world, this is a national catastrophe of unparalleled proportions that requires unbreakable unity across all institutions and political forces. In this respect, Imran Khan, the chairman of the PTI and a guy who claims to be creating a state like to Madina, has exhibited insensitivity and apathy to the hardship and suffering of the people. His sole focus appears to be reclaiming political power even at this point.
He is working extremely hard to split the country and disparage state institutions at a time when national unity should be his top priority. His evident goal is to sow instability and disaster, which the country cannot now afford. His contentious remarks about significant institutions are abhorrent.
Although Imran Khan is a leader in his own right, he must advance his political goals in accordance with the law and the constitution. This implies that he should respect governmental structures and recognise that now is not the time to act hastily and worsen the current political crisis, which might do permanent harm to the country’s political system and increase public misery.
Politics can wait till a better moment, for sure. It is ridiculous for him to want elections right away. Given that it was his government that brought the country to this chaotic state, his claim that immediate elections are the only way to winch the country out of the quagmire it is stuck in sounds absurd. His administration took pride in the dubious distinction of taking unheard-of loans and then wriggling out of the IMF agreement by making populist decisions at the tail end of the rule, sinking the economy. A continuation of his legacy is the current economic catastrophe. As a result, when he blames the current administration for the ongoing economic crisis and instils false optimism in the populace, he is attempting to misinform them.
The country is undoubtedly in serious trouble and urgently needs political stability to address both its economic problems and the effects of the floods. Even if he does not wish to work with the administration on other matters, Imran may play a constructive role by enabling it to complete its term and promote stability.
I believe that his desire and efforts to pressure the government into holding elections right away will be ineffective. Returning to the assemblies would be the greatest option for him. Any action that runs counter to this tenet might seriously harm his prospects of being relevant to the upcoming political arrangement.
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