Saturday, August 21, 2010

Indus Saga: Modern Indus civilization devastated by floods By Shamim-ur-Rahman.

The fury of the raging Indus , one of the mightiest rivers on planet Earth has uprooted almost everything from its foundations, swept away many to eternal abode , and has made millions shelter less and refugees in their own country which is unable to deal with this one of the greatest human tragedy of modern times. The UN Secretary General has described it much greater a tragedy than Tsunami and the 2005 earthquake in Pakistan and Haiti’s tragedy. Water is everywhere with hardly any space to bury the dead. Those who survived the suddenness of the fury of Hydra were now suffering from water-borne diseases. Scores are losing the battle for survival every day. A large number of people, especially children, were suffering from diarrhea, skin diseases, and above all the trauma of losing everything including the family moorings.



Courtesy: New Satellite images of Pakistan flood, before and after photos, massive destruction Wednesday, August 11, 2010 - 15:38

Note: Video prepared by Mr.Shamim-ur-Rahman's daughter Ayesha Rehman.

Roads, bridges, railway track, homes and other public utilities have been devastated while millions of acres of agriculture land has been swallowed by the mighty Indus. Crops that would have fetched billions of rupees have been destroyed and the farmers do not have the seeds to grow the next crop when the water recedes. There is hardly anything left for the grazing of livestock which has died in thousands. While the flood water will eventually recede and mingle with the sea water, its aftermath is more horrifying. While Pakistan’s resources are very meager and stretched due to its frontline role in the global war on terrorism, it has become global community’s responsibility for the survival of this nuclearised torch bearer of the ancient Indus valley civilization that has seen many ups and downs.

If the world community failed or slackened in mobilizing sufficient funds and plans on fast track basis, it might be providing space to extremists and ideologically militants backing many non-state actors to overthrow the democratic dispensation that can only survive if it can deliver the bread and butter needs of the people, provide them shelter, education and health care. In the past the decline of the Indus civilization has been attributed to changes in the courses of Indus and Ravi, changing pattern of monsoon, as is the case of climate change at the moment.

If no swift and serious action plan is devised and implemented, the natural calamity might cause erosion of a vibrant democratic polity in the region. The real challenge therefore is to determine the inner ailment of the successor of Indus civilization. While the government here is making all sorts of efforts to overcome the tragedy and resettle the uprooted people, the international community must understand that if it did not allow Pakistan to rebuild infrastructure and provide basic amenities at cheaper cost for sometimes, such as gas, electricity, gas, petrol and fertilizer, it will be doing a great disservice to the humanity. In that case democracy will lose and extremism will become a dominant force. The rise of extremism in Pakistan is linked to high cost of input that has made its industries non-competitive, rendered millions jobless while the government is unable to address their bread and butter issues due to lack of resources, making the country heavily dependent on the World Bank and IMF salvage baskets. Pakistanis are determined to change this situation as quickly as possible by rebuilding their country and protect it from extremists and jingoist elements that have become a serious threat to the international community. Ends.

Mr. Shamim-ur-Rahman is a Senior Correspondent with Daily Dawn - Pakistan.


Floodwaters continued rushing down the Indus River on August 10, 2010. High waters had traveled more than 1,000 kilometers (600 miles), from the northern reaches of the country to Pakistan’s breadbasket in Punjab Province, and on to Sindh Province. In Sindh, two million people had already evacuated. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured these images on August 10, 2010 (top), and almost exactly one year earlier, August 11, 2009 (bottom). The images show the lower Indus River, at the boundary of Punjab and Sindh Provinces. Both images use a combination of infrared and visible light to increase the contrast between water and land. Water appears in varying shades of blue. Vegetation is green, and bare ground is pinkish brown. Clouds range in color from pale blue-green to bright turquoise. In 2009, the Indus appears as a thin river—a braided stream north of Sukkur (where a barrage affects water flow), and a very skinny meandering waterway south of that city. In 2010, the river has completely filled the river valley, merging the braided streams north of Sukkur, and pushing water over riverbanks in places. Northwest of the river valley, around the city of Sibi, standing water is evident on what appears to be normally arid ground. Pools of water also appear due east of Sibi, on the other side of the river. On August 10, 2010, the Indus River is less swollen south of Sukkur than it is north of the city, but even compared to an image acquired on August 8, water levels downstream from Sukkur appear higher. Early in the day on August 9, the recorded water flow through Sukkur Barrage was up to 1.4 million cubic feet per second (cusecs). The barrage is only designed to withstand a maximum of 900,000 cusecs. United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs stated that the scale of destruction from Pakistan’s monsoon flooding in July and August of 2010 surpassed the devastation from the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, the 2005 northern Pakistan earthquake, and the 2010 Haiti earthquake combined. Courtesy: New Satellite images of Pakistan flood, before and after photos, massive destruction Wednesday, August 11, 2010 - 15:38

Not Included in the Original Article by Mr.Shamim-ur-Rahman. Following are the areas in Sindh Province, Pakistan which have been badly hit by flood. [Courtesy: Pakistan Meteorological Department]


Saturday, August 14, 2010

Is it the point of no return? by Shamim-ur-Rahman

Amid prophesies of Balkanization and restructuring of Pakistan in the on-going Great Game, a perception was growing after 63 years of independence that the country was breaking from its seam due moral and political bankruptcy, lack of good governance and adherence to the oath of allegiance to the country, and its constitution. The various military interventions and connivance of the judiciary in putting its seal of approval to extra-constitutional acts of the dictator has no doubt ruined Pakistan, but the political leadership was equally responsible for the plunder of the country and mortgaging its sovereignty.

The recent killings of nearly 100 human beings in Karachi following assassination of Muttahida Qaumi Movement’s MPA in the ongoing curse of target killings, was shocking and condemnable. It was a shame that those involved in this genocide are least bothered. They are only concerned with extending their fiefdom and flying their party flags high on corpses while making call for peace and shedding crocodile’s tears, which is so shameful. The failure of government and the law enforcement agencies in controlling the situation is all the more worrisome. Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah and our fore fathers had certainly not envisioned nor struggled for this kind of Pakistan.

Democratic dispensation is no doubt based on rivalries among competing interests but political leaders have provided the space to dictators because of their lack of experience and enabled the Establishment and its surrogates to exploit it to discredit them. Some of them are playing Trojan horse to the Establishment and to off-shore Masters. That is exactly what we are witnessing today.

In the context of the ongoing war on terror, the suicide bombings and indiscriminate attacks on various elements of the society, there is obvious damage to the national psyche and questions continue to arise about the viability of the state. The nature of pre-meditated killings of political rivals every now and then under the garb of action against land mafia and terrorists, and failure, rather lack of will of all the stake holders and the law enforcement agencies, has raised many questions about the ability of the ruling coalition.

It is because of that we are being branded as `terrorist state', and `a failing state'. The growth of Talibanization has generated debate about the nature of dispensation suited for Pakistan. We need to engage in self-introspection and sincerely examine our conduct and causes of debacles and look into the future. Many believe that there has been an “unnecessary debate, amongst the weak minded, on questioning the very genesis of Pakistan; the way it was conceived, propounded, struggled for and finally, achieved”. It is the general belief that present problems arose because we deviated from the original philosophy and nature of the state of Pakistan as it was conceived i.e. "Pakistan to be a democratic state following the parliamentary system, based on Islam and the Holly Prophet's best injunctions, amidst moderate, enlightened progressive conditions, with wisdom and tolerance, not following the theocratic cleric, and mullahs”.

Pakistan’s current political scenario is not different. Even today we see that only politicians are maligned and discredited for corrupt practices, be that in the context of fake degrees or financial corruption, or war on terror. But even the most outspoken and critics of the government do not have the courage to use same adjectives against military leadership or members of judiciary who claim to be omnipotent despite deviating from their oath owing to which we see military calling the shots while politicians serve as garnish. Such group of politicians is jockeying for Bangladesh formula for derailing elected government and some elements were openly encouraging military intervention by using the clichés of “bloody change”.

We are living in an era when there is no sanctity of the oath on which father of the nation Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah had laid so much emphasis. It was shocking for many to see that while the people of Pakistan were devastated by floods and were enraged by the British Prime Minister Cameroon’s malicious remarks against Pakistan in India, the President chose to go ahead with his visit to Britain. On top of it was the surprising public reaction of the ISI on Cameroon’s uncalled for allegations. The ISI is supposed to work under the Prime Minister. But its chief, who was recently given one year’s extension, chose to cancel visit of the security experts to Britain in protest against the British Prime Minister’s remarks. He chose to make it public with a design to generate public debate and exert pressure on the government which had decided to deal with it diplomatically. Did the ISI take the decision without the consent and knowledge of the government? Was it another attempt to subvert the elected government as was done when long march of was engineered by the Bonapartist to achieve their objectives. Can the democratic institutions survive in this situation?

Politicians are often blamed for instability between 1947 and Ayub Khan’s military takeover in 1958. What is often is forgotten, however, is that political instability was caused by Liaquat's death. Politicians entered their “period of irresponsibility after Ghulam Mohammad dissolved the first Constituent Assembly and Munir stripped it of its sovereignty”.

The current democratic dispensation that owes much to the supreme sacrifice of Benazir Bhutto is also facing functional problems as we see that PML (N) trying hard to bring down the government led by Mr. Asif Ali Zardari’s Pakistan Peoples Party and to hold mid‑term elections. The scenario of domestic politics is very similar to that of the 1990's when there was constant‑bickering, accusations and counter accusations, and conspiracy, with very little focus on genuine national problems, especially the bread and butter issues. It seems that democratic leadership has not learnt lessons.

Because of this behaviour of the politicians General Pervez Musharraf was able to topple the elected government in 1999, taking the nation back to square one by scuttling democratic dispensation. After 9/11 Pakistan was turned into a client state of the US, just as it had happened in 1980, for Washington’s military operations in Afghanistan. Pakistan became the front line state in support of the U.S. for the 'War on Terror. Musharraf thrived on his might and lies.

Like any dictator Musharraf also fell prey to his desire to wear both the hats of President and as Chief of Army Staff. In a reckless move he dismissed the Chief Justice and the entire superior judiciary of Pakistan, appointing judges of his own choice. It generated public upsurge against his misrule which was spearheaded by lawyers and some political parties, civil society and media that brought about his exit. The elections in 2008 that were held after his exit and assassination of Benazir Bhutto, Pakistan Peoples Party emerged as the largest party on sympathy votes. Asif Ali Zardari was elected President by the newly elected parliament.

It was hoped that new elected political leadership would focus on bread and butter issue and revisit its war on terror policy to prevent further destabilization of the country. But their inept behaviour has further plunged the country into a deep crisis. While internal and external security environment remain precarious, Pakistan has been experiencing major financial crisis, mainly due to high oil prices and mismanagement in the last two years of Musharraf's rule.

It is generally believed that the present problem has aggravated because of Pakistan’s role in the on-going war on terror and the rise of Taliban insurgency in the Tribal Areas and Swat Valley where the remnants are still active despite a big military offensive launched by the army against Taliban in these areas. As a consequence we see rise in suicide bombings in the settled areas also. Both civil and military leadership was trying to establish writ of the government in these areas while public opinion has also turned against the Taliban. But the people are not generally safe.

But much of the problems that we face today are due the distortions created by Ghulam Mohammad/Justice Munir axis. It was Justice Munir who made military rule permissible and paved the way for successive military interventions, be that of Ayub Khan, Yaha or General Ziaul Haq and Musharraf.

Munir Report criticized the religious leaders and blunted their support for the new constitution. According to McGrath “Munir's distortion of the past created an oddity in the history of decolonization. The people of Pakistan were told by Munir that they remained subject to the prerogative rights of the English Queen exercised through her representative, the Governor‑General. Munir justified the use of the Queen's prerogative rights to uphold the dissolution of the Assembly on the ground that the Assembly had failed to produce a new constitution, a constitution which he in fact knew existed”.

Munir in fact laid the foundations of authoritarian law in Pakistan His Law of Civil Necessity was stab in the back of democratic dispensation as he advocated that those in command of the coercive powers of the state had the ,'right, to suspend constitutional government when and for however long they thought necessary.

While Munir-Ghulam Mohammad axis eroded foundations of democratic and constitutional polity in Pakistan, those politico-religious elements, who were nowhere to be seen in the freedom struggle, rather they were among those who openly opposed it, gradually gained ground and started asserting themselves. It started with the anti-Ahmadi Movement and became more pronounced and powerful when they succeeded in modifying the Objectives Resolution by inserting the religious clauses in it, violating the Quaid's wise advice, "Religion has nothing to do with matters of the state."

Over the years these elements became stronger and reached the pinnacle in the days of General Ziaul Haque who had reportedly claimed that he had “set in motion a trend which would be irreversible." Talibanization of Pakistan is the result of his short sighted policies for which the nation is paying heavily today. Some retired Generals of the Pak Army who served with Zia think that during the days of military dictator the corner stone of the professional thinking of the army was gravely shaken by the philosophies of Jihadism and getting involved in counter-productive proxy wars. These lofty ideas still prevail, they believe. Once the army entered the political arena, commencing with Ayub Khan, its “senior leadership got infected by ills of sycophancy, unlimited power, authoritarianism, and acquisition of perks and privileges” While political leadership got corrupted over the years, sycophancy and establishing of personal fiefdoms particularly affected the selection of the top commanders. This phenomenon had started in early 1960s.

Religion was used as a crutch by various governments to find easy solutions to their political difficulties, instead of opting for a pragmatic approach to solve problems as they arose. There was an obvious lack of statecraft in handling the affairs of the state.

It is the general belief that all the problems and tragedies that we faced as a nation; be that the 1965 war, engagement in Afganistan war, or Kargil episode etc, were the outcome of such a mindset that was not based on sober and well thought out strategies. Contrary to the general perception the 1965 war retarded progress the country was making; whereas the intervention in Afghanistan, during the Zia era, overlooked the later fall-out of destabilized Afghanistan, whose four million inhabitants, Pakistan had been hosting for more than two decades, and which has not even agreed to accept the Durand line as the international boundary between the two countries. Its leadership is more closely allied to New Delhi than to Pakistan. Be that as it may we have failed in the realm of governance, be it civil or military. The ideas of progress and well being of the populace, combined with modernism, are not part of their Lexicon. Their philosophies are restricted to winning elections by fair or foul means and accumulating wealth for themselves.

But there is hope due to emergence of a vibrant media which has exposed many ills, though it also needs to refine its methodology, especially in electronic media. Unlike the past today young journalists are questioning authorities and looking into their eyes directly. The civil society which played crucial role in the movement for the restoration and independence of judiciary is also a major positive development. Together they can act as a catalyst to a more lasting and liberal democratic dispensation rooted in ideals of Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah. ENDS

This article appeared in Dawn's Independence Day supplement on Aug 14, 2010 - Mr. Shamim-ur-Rahman is a Senior Correspondent with Daily Dawn - Pakistan.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Flood Relief Efforts by Dr Awab Alvi and his Team.

Over the past two days our team of volunteers at Motorsports Club of Pakistan and theOffroadPakistan have been in some intense discussion on what might be the best course of action. We have been busy raising funds locally and commitments have reached to a tune of close to Rs. 2.5 million. The online drive at SARelief has touched $2278 from a few generous donors, as the message spreads im sure this easy PayPal payment option, so close to the Islamic month of Ramadan will most likely get a considerable level of funding for the devastation in Pakistan. Flood Relief Drive to Sindh – Live Tracking Posted by Teeth MaestroAugust 14, 2010 [Note: Faisal Kapadia and DrAwab will be feverishly tweeting along the trip and taking abundant pictures. We hope to make this a total digitally monitored relief trip. We shall be exclusively using the #PkField & PkOprel hashtag for sharing our progress from Karachi to Sukkur.
Flood has started to reach Sindh from the last two days, the winding Indus river which curves and twists across Sindh is likely to significantly change the terrain for a long time to come, it is anticipated that with the immense pressure of the water it is definite that the water will overrun the pre charted course of the Indus River and alter its embankments cutting a new course towards the sea spreading its wings wide across the plains of Sindh in its due course. A few major concerns do remain, the question that lurks in the minds of many, will the barrages hold up. It seems the Sukkur barrage is as of now holding strong, credit can be equated to calculated and unplanned rupture of a few embankments upstream which have helped soften the pressure of the main flood, these leaks will continue to seep the pressure and lessen the impact in sindh, sadly it also does mean more flooding in the affected areas. - The past seven days Faisal Chohan a TEDFellow has been feverishly working to establish an incident reporting website at to monitor the flooding situation in Pakistan. 3441 FL { Pakistan Flood Incident Reporting } 3441 FL { Pakistan Flood Incident Reporting }
The most damage is happening in many low lying areas or the katcha villages, the population that inhabited these areas was forewarned and has been able to scamper towards safety meaning minimal loss of human life as seen in the Pakhtoonkhwa region where the poor folks never expected these floods, The devastation of property and crops will be exorbitantly high all across the country.

There are reports that the Government of Pakistan has provided these disaster area with sufficient funds for evacuation and basic support, some of the nazims, MPAs and MNAs have utilize the funds judiciously and these areas are fortunate to be faring well, but quite a large area of Sindh lies at the hand of corrupt leaders and feudalz who chose to siphon off the disaster relief into their own pockets, these localities are mostly suffering it is also being reported that it is these areas where the screams for aid is the largest. Its sad that even at times of disaster the corrupt are heartless even in such a situation.

Another concern that has come to light from a few strategic planners is to monitor the situation as the flood finally makes its way into the Arabian Sea, the mere mammoth amount of flood water colliding with the ocean will create a backlash, with high tide coming in there are good chances that the area surrounding areas will be inundated for example Keti Bunder, which are large plains at sea level will be at best drowned, Karachi is too far to be threatened but the marsh areas near the mouth of the Indus will be bad.

There are various concerns with taking relief deep into Sindh, firstly one must asses the vehicular traffic going up north as two highways serve Sindh, Indus and the National Highway. The proximity of the Indus River to both must be monitored with care, the looping Indus River might wash away some major sections of the highway making the areas beyond it inaccessible. The road beyond Sukkur is already inaccessibly meaning Kashmore, Gothki and Shikarpur are already cut away from Karachi, as the flood flows southward more regions are to be affected hence impacting the delivery of relief goods and volunteer transportation, we would not like to risk the noble effort but accidentally creating more of a mess.

The flooding will generally subside in 10-12 days, though Sukkur barrage still awaits one major push of water which is expected to hit the area in few days, after which water levels will go down. The displaced people who have run to high ground with bare minimal belongings in tow will return after the flooding reduces and then hope to rebuild their homes. At the moment these refugees need cooked food, as there is no wood and shortage of eatables, if relief agencies plan then a kitchen is one best sought after relief, manning this for 10-12 days cooking 2 meals a day of rice and daal, one only needs a dependable volunteer commitment and decent logistical support, security I am told will be provided by the local administration as there is a definite chance of stampede at each meal.

The flood affected people also need medical assistance, snake bites, mosquitoes, and relief from other water borne diseases. It has been repeatedly suggested not to over burden these people with other relief goods while they are in temporary shelter as in a few days they will return, if they are showered with large quantities of relief rations it will be next to impossible for them to carry it all back, in these days the greed of stockpiling will overcome the actual needs of these poor dislocated people. Opportune time for relief goods, building material and other essential items can be strategically sent 10-12 days later when they are closer to their houses. Our effort with the Motorsports Club of Pakistan is to send out a scouting team with some minimal aid to evaluate and help the needy in whatever way possible, mostly medical assistance, return safely with sufficient information to plan for the larger push 10 odd days later after the flood has subsided and the roads are capable of transporting relief trucks up into deeper areas of Sindh. It is expected that Faisal Kapadia and I [Awab Alvi] along with a few more friends cram into 3-4 offroad vehicles to embark on the scouting trip into sindh for 2-3 days, where then we can better gauge the impact of flood in the region. I hope to keep everyone posted as more information becomes available with time .

PS- This post has been a summary of the abundant discussion we have had over the past two days in planning for the Flood Relief effort to Sindh, if I am mistaken at a certain point or if I am wrong to have reached a certain conclusion then please correct me, my attempt is to share all the information as best as I have understood

The earthquake’s that have hit Pakistan in 2005 and 2008 were regarded as the worst tragedy for the nation. Few have realized that the recent floods have in fact caused more damage then those earthquake’s did. As per latest reports official figures stand at 1600 dead and 12 million left homeless.

The Monsoon rains began two weeks ago and have washed away roads, bridges and communications lines, hampering rescue efforts by aid organizations and the government. The downpours have grounded many aircraft trying to rescue people and ferry aid, including six helicopters manned by US troops on secondment from Afghanistan.

Currently 30,000 Pakistan Army troops are busy in rescue and relief efforts. Where as the Earthquake of 2005 and 2008 and the IDP crisis were devastating, unlike the Flooding they were contained within a geographic area. Flooding has been reported from Kyhber-Pakthunkwa all they way down to Southern Punjab and Sindh. There is only so much the government and the armed forces can do in the face of such a massive disaster and so we as citizens have undertaken the mantle of trying to add our little drop to the ocean

To that end, we have decided to take up relief efforts to the areas of Sindh in an attempt to help bring relief to the suffering. The idea is initially to partner with a team of who is willing to take the relief goods up. We hope to launch such an intiative with Motorsports Club of Pakistan and our very own OffroadPakistan group to some part of Sindh and personally deliver the goods there. To help our international donors we have partnered with SA Relief operating under the aiegus ofPaksef a US Tax-deductible 501(c)(3) NGO registered in California to enable our US based well wishers to contribute to the relief via Chipin and Paypal

The online collection is slated to run through out Ramazan to tap into the generous Zakat giving ability of Muslims around the world, ideally this would mean two missions, one from the cash funds collected personally in Karachi while the second mission will utilize the generous contribution from online donations. It is my personal promise that all funds collected will be disbursed off in a total transparent manner as possible, all recipts and travel expenditures will be posted online for the world to see. Like the IDP Relief effort we did in 2009 here, here Donations can be made directly into MOTORSPORTS CLUB PAKISTAN account at Samba Bank Ltd. in Karachi. A/C#06500379349 or even online on the widget provided above [CLICK THE LINK BELOW FOR DR AWAB BLOG] which is processed via Paypal and these online contributions are being collected by PAKISTAN SCIENCE & ENGINEERING FOUNDATION a 501(c)(3) registered California based not-for-profit organization, EIN# 20-2950808. For info contact: REFERENCES: Some thoughts into Planning for the Flood Relief in Sindh Posted by Teeth MaestroAugust 11, 2010 Pakistan Flood Relief Campaign – Donate Generously Posted by Teeth MaestroAugust 10, 2010

Flood IDPs in Sindh: Efforts by Zulfiqar Halepoto.

Dear Friends, Due to violent monsoon and floods thousands of people have already migrated from Ghotki, Sukkur, Larkana, Shikarpur and Jacobabad. In a latest development 90% of Jacobabad has been evacuated. Special trains have been mobilized for the refugees, heading towards Hyderabad and Karachi. Humanitarian Community is requested to respond accordingly. There may be some other camps but so far four camps are identified in Karachi by our civil society teams, political parties and media friends.


Chakra Goth, Korangi: In this camp at least 40 families, migrated from Thul, Jacobabad are living in very vulnerable conditions. To babies were born during floods and they are in a very critical health conditions. (Nazir Hussain Dewro 0333 2284 325)

Shah Rasool Colony, near Abdullah Shah Ghazi mazar, Saddar Town: 32 families are migrated from Kachho of Larkana, majority are women and minor kids. Please contact Wazir Thaheem, TRDP Karachi office 0333 7221751- 021 35868791-3) or ADO Saddar Town, Imtiaz Ali Bughio 0300 700 2815)

Mehmoodabad Graveyard: 45 families from different flood hit areas of upper Sindh are there and looking for help. Wazir Thaheem, TRDP Karachi office 0333 7221751- 021 35868791-3)

Sachal Goth: hundreds of flood survivors, displaced and now living on footpaths in a very pathetic situation. (Ali Hasan 0345 8097712)


There are many camps in Hyderabad and looked after by different people/forums/organizations but the organized one is arranged by IDO. You can contact TRDP Jamshoro office 0300 8377241 or Zain Daudpoto and Adee Sahar Rizvi ( 0331 3556353) for your support and aid. More than 300 people are living in this camp.

People living in camps badly need food, safe drinking water and medicines. Please come forward for the support, your little input can bring a major change.

This is to further inform you that subject to mass evacuation of Jacobabad due to flood waters that are approaching fast to the city, Sindh Government has decided to move the IDPs from Jacobabad to Karachi, Hyderabad and Jamshoro. The current update is that CDGK has identified following four locations in Karachi where the IDPs will be brought in

1. Gaddap

2. Bin Qasim Town

3. Kiamari

4. Toll Plaza

Flood survivors badly need camps, food, shelter, safe drinking water and health related stuff. We have been informed that two trains have already left Jacobabad carrying the IDPs to Karachi. Further updates will be shared as soon as received.

Dear Friends: There is a mix of opinion about charity and aid. Some friends called and refused to support government initiatives, some are of the view that they shall participate through NGOs, and some already sent their contributions to different foundations including EDHI. So whatever medium suit you…please come forward and support the cause.

This email is based on the information collected different sources. Some friends and forums may have more information to ad so they are welcome.

For further details don’t hesitate to contact me at any time


Zulfiqar Halepoto

0300 8377241

Friends living abroad can send their contribution to TRDP Operational Account number: 10650 – 4 at NBP Model Branch (1027), Clifton, Karachi or whatever organization they like.

DAM GOOD: Indus changing its course By Shamim-ur-Rahman

The River Indus is the lifeline of Pakistan. However, due to inadequate maintenance of its embankments and massive silting, fears have been expressed that the Indus might change its course again, which will have a grave impact on the economy of Sindh. Every time the Indus changed its course in the past, the irrigation system was destroyed resulting in political upheavals. Sukkur Barrage is vital to the country’s agro-economy, especially Sindh and Balochistan. A warning was sounded when two of the gates on its right side had to be repaired during General Musharraf’s tenure. There were even suggestions to build another barrage at a convenient place upstream to tame the Indus. If urgent steps are not taken, historians may accuse us of destroying our civilisation. Recently at a Sindh Assembly briefing Elahi Bux Soomro, the former Speaker of the National Assembly (himself an engineer), pointed out the dangers faced by Sukkur Barrage in northern Sindh.

The danger became noticeable because of non-maintenance. If immediate corrective measures are not taken, the barrage may not last for more than eight to 10 years. There is also a danger of large-scale destruction and the river changing its course permanently in the case of high floods, which are not unusual. Due to silting the barrage cannot withstand the pressure of high floods, as witnessed in the past.

Silt has been allowed to accumulate in upstream of the barrage. As a result, new islands have appeared. One large island is blocking seven gates of the barrage. The areas of the old natural islands of Sadhu Bela and the one which connects the Lansdown train bridge to the main banks at Rohri and Sukkur have increased manifold due to the accumulated silt along the river banks. The size of the channel has been reduced to one-third of its original size.

What is worst is the fact that parks, restaurants, houses, mosques and other structures have been allowed to be built on these new islands and silt banks. Large scale cultivation with embankments erected to keep out the high flows of the river can be seen all over within the river course. In the original design of the barrage two-mile long guide walls were built on both banks of the river. These walls went right up to Lansdown Railway Bridge.

No structures or encroachment was allowed within these walls in order to ensure that the width of the river was protected at all times. Regular cleaning of the silt from the river banks was carried out to ensure that the depth of the pond was maintained. Sukkur Barrage is known to have taken high-floods of one million plus cusecs easily. In 1973 and 1976 it withstood flows of 1.4 million cusecs. With the width of the channel reduced to one-third, obstacles and encroachments have appeared within the guide walls and experts feel that a flow of 500, 000 cusecs may be difficult to pass.

They also fear that in the case of high-floods the river may break its banks upstream of Sukkur and the cities of Jacobabad, Larkana, Shikarpur and hundreds of villages in the area may come under water. The river may also adopt a new permanent course after breaking its banks making Sukkur Barrage redundant. The protective walls at the mouth of the canals on both banks are a part of the design and were built in order to stop silt from the mainstream from going into the canals and heavily silting them up.

Canals draw their water from the narrow channels between the protective walls and the canal heads. The width of these channels on the two banks covers five gates of the barrage on the right side and six on the left bank. Removing silt accumulating in these channels is part of the maintenance routine of the barrage. Under this procedure depth-soundings are taken within these narrow channels on a daily basis in order to ascertain the amount of silt collecting at the bottom. Whenever the amount of silt goes above the maximum permissible level, the gates of canals are closed and those of the barrage are opened for a few hours to let the silt pass downstream with the flow.

Usually this scarring operation, as it is called, is undertaken every 30 or 40 days. For the last four years depth soundings have not been recorded and the scarring operation is being conducted only presently after a gap of almost four years. Naturally the gates of the barrage on side channels are being opened for as long as 48 hours in the present operation instead of the usual six to eight hours. The operation may not succeed as the silt accumulated over the years may have transformed into a firm riverbed. In that case, a large scale and costly dredging would be the only available option. With the bed of the river having gone up and demands in the re-modelled canals rising, a grave situation is emerging. Now water is flowing above the gates of the barrage in the canal but the gates have been designed to let the water flow under them and not over them.

New pressure on the gates is developing and if one or two gates of the barrage give way, there will be no barrage left. Irrigation officials are in a fix as to how this problem could be tackled while ensuring increased flow into the canals. However, there cannot be a compromise on removing the encroachments within the guide walls and restoring the width of the pond to its designed size. There may be a problem because of the construction of three mosques which may be difficult to remove.

An expert, however, believes that in the case of a flood of 500,000 cusec plus, not only these three, but many other mosques situated on the right bank will go under water apart from damaging the barrage. Some analysts believe that changes in the course of the River Indus and decline in the irrigation system had made the conquest of Sindh easy for Mohammad bin Qasim. Experts are also of the view that choking up of the canal’s mouth or falling into the level of the river will create precarious conditions for farmers. Sukkur Barrage is meant to maintain the desired level of water on the upstream side of river. When the water in the river is in excess, surplus must be allowed to flow downstream by raising the gates. When there is shortfall, the flow of water downstream is either reduced or cut off to maintain the desired level on the upstream. REFERENCE: DAM GOOD: Indus changing its course By Shamim-ur-Rahman Saturday, 11 Oct, 2008 | 12:56 PM PST |

Mr. Shamim-ur-Rahman is a Senior Correspondent with Daily Dawn - Pakistan.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Help the poor victims of Floods in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa & Balochistan.

Apart from any kind of Political Difference "Human Life" is sacred! Today it was somebody else tomorrow it could be me. The life is long and completes its circle. Pakistani Intelligentsia should offer a Collective Funeral Prayers on Decency, Mercy, Consciousness and Compassion because not single TV Channel has stop its "Routine Musical Programs/Comedy Program" even now when Millions are homeless and more than 1000 are dead in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Jurair Ibn `Abdullah reported that the Prophet (Peace be upon him) said: "Whoever is not merciful towards people, will not be treated mercifully by Allah." [Note: Reported by Ahmed on a good authority, Al-Muntaqa (No.69), and Al-Haisami, vol.1, p.27]

Abu Musa reported that the Prophet (Peace be upon him) said: "You will not be true believers until you are merciful with one another." They said: "O, Messenger of Allah, we are all merciful!" He said: "It is not that you should be merciful to each other, but you should also merciful in general." [Note: Agreed upon, Al-Bukhari in Al-Adab and Muslim in Al-Fada`l]

`Abdullah Ibn `Amr reported that the Prophet (Peace be upon him) said: "The merciful are treated mercifully by the Merciful. Be merciful to those on earth so that Allah will be Merciful to you in the heavens." [Note: Reported by Al-Tabarani, Al-Muntaqa, No. 1322, and Al-Haisami. vol.8, p.78]

Hundreds of people have died in northwestern Pakistan after floods triggered by monsoon rains swept through the region. More than a million people have been affected and thousands forced to flee their homes as bloated rivers washed away villages and triggered devastating landslides. Rescue operations are under way to save the stranded, but submerged roads and destroyed infrastructure are proving to be major obstacles. Al Jazeera's Sohail Rahman reports from Islamabad, Pakistan's capital. [Courtesy: AlJazeera English]

Pakistan's worst flooding

PESHAWAR: The United Nations says devastating floods have affected 1 million people in Pakistan. Officials say floods have killed 430 people in the deadliest such disaster to hit the region since 1929. The U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs says the cost of damage from floods was not clear. Rescuers were using army helicopters, heavy trucks and boats to reach flood-hit areas. Government official Lutfur Rehman said Saturday floodwaters were receding in the northwest, but rescuers were facing problems reaching affected people because of damage caused to roads and bridges. The flooding capped an already deadly week in Pakistan. A passenger jet slammed into hills overlooking Islamabad killing all 152 people on board Wednesday. REFERENCE: Floods affected one million in KP: UN Updated at: 1215 PST, Saturday, July 31, 2010
PESHAWAR: The death toll from massive floods in northwestern Pakistan rose to 1,100 Sunday as rescue workers struggled to save more than 27,000 people still trapped by the raging water, officials said. - Monsoon floods kill up to 800, affects 1 Million Rescue workers and troops in northwest Pakistan struggled Saturday to reach thousands of people affected by the country's worst floods in living memory, as the death toll rose to 800. Hundreds of homes and vast swathes of farmland were destroyed in the northwest and Azad Jammu Kashmir (AJK), with the main highway to China reportedly cut and communities isolated as monsoon rains caused flash floods and landslides. The United Nations said almost a million people had been affected by the flooding, and at least 45 bridges destroyed around Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. Television footage and photos shot from helicopters showed people clinging to the walls and roof tops of damaged houses as gushing waters rampaged through inundated villages. Carrying their belongings and with children on their shoulders, some even walked barefoot through the water to seek safety. "This is the worst ever flood in the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in the country's history," provincial information minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain said. REFERENCE: Floods affected one million in KP: UN Updated at: 1215 PST, Saturday, July 31, 2010 Death toll from floods rises to 1,100 Sunday, 01 Aug, 2010 At least 410 killed, over 400,000 affected by KP flood By Zulfiqar Ali Saturday, 31 Jul, 2010
Rains floods Balochistan

Courtesy: DAWN NEWS

The Balochistan once again faces the flood with the destruction of various villages, localities and major crops. More than 50 people and hundreds of livestock deaths have been reported till date while hundreds are reported as missing. The Affected areas have rare approach to the communication and public transport, the national highway N65 has been damaged from various parts while train line has also been broken by the flood. Hundreds of families including new bourns, aged and ailing are bound to spend their time and seek for the help under the open sky without food and shelter. The Green Balochistan's volunteer team visited the affected areas of District Sibbi, Nasirabad and Bolan on 23, 24 and 26th of July 2010. The condition of affected areas is getting most terrible and people are seriously looking for Food, Shelter & necessary medicines. [Courtesy: greenbalochistan]
Balochistan Flood 2010 - Courtesy GREEN Balochistan

Balochistan Flood 2010 Part 02

Balochistan- Cyclone phet.

Thousands of people were rendered homeless in Barkhan, Kohlu and Sibi. The disastrous Flood in the various areas of balochistan.
Flood in Barkhan - 2010

Disastrous Flood in Barkhan and Kohlu


There is also a marked threat of outbreak of epidemics in the flood affected regions as there is a lack of food, clean water and medication leave alone substantial medicine and medical staff which are even unapproachable for easily-treatable cases of snake-bites that have been reported from villages but could not be treated as the rescue teams have not arrived or are short of medical articles such as snake-bite serum. The Wazirabad village of Bakhtiarabad in Lehri Tehsil is the worst-affected area and such is the situation there that dead bodies are decaying for nothing is available for neither the funeral nor the people to bury them. Over 57,000 people have been affected in Sibi, Lehri, Barkhan.The floods have damaged 90% of the houses, over 50% livestock and agriculture. And according to the district agriculture and revenue departments these floods have broken the past records of 1978. “In Tambo Tehsil of Nasirabad, more than 30,000 people have been made homeless while crops have been completely washed-out in the canal-irrigated area. Around 0.2 million people had been affected by floods in six districts of Balochistan where rescue and relief work had been slow and inadequate. Roads, power transmission lines and railway tracks have been destroyed in the district. Reference: Uncoverings Of The Flood : Balochistan Govt’s Inaction : Are We Nurturing The Deprivation In Balochis?- by Hafsa Khawaja 28 July 2010 Over 60,000 affected by flood in Balochistan By Saleem Shahid Friday, 30 Jul, 2010,000-affected-by-flood-in-balochistan-070

A Compassionate appeal from a FB Friend, Awais Masood My dear urbanites, please do something for the victims of floods and plane crash. We can certainly do a lot but for heaven's sake do not insult the victims by calling these calamities a 'khudaee azaab' since nobody deserves an 'azaab' more than your consumerist existence [Awais Masood]

پاکستان: بدترین سیلاب، کشمیر اور پختون خواہ شدید متاثر
آخری وقت اشاعت: جمعـء 30 جولائ 2010 , 11:03 GMT 16:03 PST

پاکستان: بدترین بارشوں کے نتیجے میں آنے والے سیلاب کے باعث اب تک ڈیڑھ سو سے زیادہ افراد کے ہلاک ہونے کی تصدیق ہوچکی ہے، تاہم غیر سرکاری اعداد و شمار کے مطابق تین سو تک افراد کے ہلاک ہونے کی اطلاع ہے۔ پاکستان کے زیر انتظام کشمیر اور پختون خواہ شدید طور پر متاثر ہیں۔ پختو ن خواہ میں ہنگامی حالت نافذ کردی گئی ہے۔
As raging floods wreaked havoc across Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and some Fata regions, inundating large parts of Nowshera, Charsadda and Swat, the people of Dera Ismail Khan were warned on Friday of a similar disaster after 400,000 to 500,000 cusecs of water discharged from the overflowing Tarbela reservoir threatened all natural and man-made protective barriers in the district. REFERENCE: Monsoon unleashes havoc in the north
خیبر پختونخواہ میں بارش، ہلاکتیں، تباہی
آخری وقت اشاعت: جمعـء 30 جولائ 2010 , 13:55 GMT 18:55 PST

پاکستان کےصوبہ خیر پختونخوا میں حکام کے مطابق مون سون کی بارشوں کے بعد شروع ہونے والے سیلابی ریلوں میں ایک سو پچاس افراد ہلاک اور سولہ ہزار سے زائد محصور ہو گئے ہیں۔
Courtesy: BBC
I don't know whether Late. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto grazed on grass or not but people of Pakistan have been having grass for Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Supper too..
The nuclear dream began with Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. Educated in America at the beginning of the Cold War, a student of politics, by the time he became foreign minister in the early 1960s he saw in the bomb a route to power as much for Pakistan as for himself. Nuclear nationalism found its first champion in Bhutto who declared Pakistan would fight India for a thousand years, and that Pakistan would get the bomb even if it meant having to eat grass. In other words, he thought glory was worth the price of self-destruction. (Dr Zia Mian, a research scientist at Princeton University, US, is active with the Pakistan Peace Coalition. He is co-editor with Smitu Kothari of Out of the Nuclear Shadow, Rainbow Press, New Delhi, 2001.) REFERENCE: The Thousand-Year War With Ourselves It took Kargil, and a thousand young lives, to rediscover an old truth: the Bomb is a blunt weapon ZIA MIAN MAGAZINE JUL 23, 2001

They don't have funds for Boats and Motor Boats to save life in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, yet they have funds to distribute in Bar Councils.

Finance Minster Dr Abdul Hafeez unveiled the budget 2010-11. Realising the defence as number one priority in the overall current security environment and the expenditures incurred in the war on terror, defence spending for the coming financial year has seen an anticipated upsurge. The government has allocated Rs442.17 billion for defence expenditure for the fiscal year 2010-2011. It marks an increase of Rs64.04 billion or 16.9 per cent compared to Rs376.85 billion last year. Among these, Rs176 billion is to be allocated for the much-required salary increases and other benefits to the defence personnel. REFERENCE: No funds for saving lives: Defence budget at a glance Saturday, 19 Jun, 2010
Pakistan is paying $1.4 billion for the jets and an additional $1.3 billion for the up gradation of its existing fleet. F-16 jets land in Pakistan Saturday, 31 Jul 2010

No Funds for Boats and Motor Boats

President Zardari and his entourage will stay at the five-star luxury hotel Hyatt Regency London - The Churchill, located in the Marylebone area, adjacent to Park Lane, and minutes walk from Hyde Park, Marble Arch and Buckingham Palace. ‘The News’ has learned that nearly half of the ninth exclusive floor called Regency Club Level, which has 18 suites and 10 executive type luxury rooms, has been booked and blocked for any commoner to venture into on the grounds of security reasons. Nearly half of the rooms will not be used at all as some of the delegation members will be accommodated in other cheap-rented rooms, but still the full rent will be paid. President Zardari will stay in one of the booked the Royal Suites, the most expensive luxury suites which cost around £7,000 per night for each room. He follows the footsteps of former president Pervez Musharraf who was addicted to staying in his nearby favourite Dorchester Hotel, which is even more expensive than the Churchill Hotel. The services bill or the catering (breakfasts, lunches and dinners) is not included in the price. The catering for this trip has been ordered from an Asian restaurant at the cost of around £18 per pack for the delegation members and the high commission members, but the special meals for the president and a selected few will be arranged by the hotel itself. Around 10-12 luxury cars have been hired at the cost of £400 per vehicle and they will be engaged with the delegation for the entire duration of the presidential visit. REFERENCE: Security concerns main reason Saturday, July 31, 2010 Zardari team’s visit to cost tons of UK pounds By Murtaza Ali Shah
مـينوتـر ديوتا ناشتي ۾ ڪيئي نوجوان ڇوڪرا ۽ ڇوڪريون ڳـڙڪائي ويندو هو. حقيقت ۾ مينوتـر اڃا بـ پنهنجي هچا جاري رکيو پيو اچي. فـرق اهو آھ تـ هاڻ سندس روح سياستدانن ۾ گهڙي ويو آھ. ڪٿي ٻوڏن سبب تباهي، ڪٿي صاف پـاڻي نـ ملڻ سبب بيماريون، ڪٿي بک ۽ بدحالي تـ ڪٿي وري ماڻهن کي قبيلائي جهيڙن ۾ ڦاسائي ٿو. مينوتـر جنسي ڳـڙڪائيندو هو ۽ هي موت جي کيڏ مان مال گـڏ ڪن ٿا

جڏهن روم سڙي رهيو هو تـ نيرو بانسري پـئي وڄائي. ٿـر ۽ ڪوهستان ۾ ماڻهن کي صاف پاڻيءَ جو هڪ گلاس ميسر ناھ ۽ حڪمران هليا آهن جپان جي طرز تي نئون شهر ”ذوالفقار آباد“ اڏڻ ـ اهي ماڻهو ڪنهن جي اکين ۾ ٿا ڌوڙ وجهن؟ سنڌ ۾ اڳ موجود شهرن کي سهولتون ڏنيون اٿن جو هليا آهن نوان شهر جوڙڻ؟ گـٽر کليا پيا آهن انهن ۾ ٻارڙا ڪري پـيا مرن. شايد نيرو جو روح هنن ۾ واسو ڪري ويو آھ ـ

Courtesy: Sindhi Xafar 
When Towns are in ruins our Super Intelligent Rulers instead of rehabilitating the existing Towns, they are building the new one. Why don't they divert these funds to those towns which really need financial help: Zulfikarabad layout finalised By Mohammad Iqbal Khwaja Saturday, 31 Jul, 2010 Fact Sheets on Zulfiqarabad! There is also a General [Retd] S P Shahid [very close to Musharraf] is sitting in the meeting and that General is responsible for many shifting to Gitmo.:) Appointments show Musharraf does not intend to shed uniform: Gen Haq appointed JCSC chairman, Gen Hayat VCOAS By Rana Qaisar Sunday, October 03, 2004 Bahawalpur Corps Commander Lt-Gen SP Shahid. Couldn't they find any civilian for the post? Zulfiqar Development Authority Director-General General (retd) SP Shahid will also brief the president about the projects underway in Lyari and Karachi.A megacity in the making? As per news above that "Zulfiquarabad would be like Singapore" like city in Sindh. What about developing or allocating funds for many "Moen Jo Daro"like Moro, Sakrand, Mehar, Sukkur, Nawabshah and you can take any name. Please keep Sindh remain as Sindh, don't make it Singapore or Paris just arrange funds for existing cities. Progress on Zulfikarabad city project reviewed By Our Reporter Friday, 23 Jul, 2010 - KARACHI, July 22: President Asif Ali Zardari, who arrived in Karachi late on Wednesday, presided over two meetings in the Bilawal House on Thursday to review progress on the planned ‘Zulfikarabad City’ in Thatta district and industrial and agricultural demonstration zones in the province.