A A Khalid reviews the floods, the polity and the dangers ahead.
The tragic Pakistan floods, are unprecedented in modern history, the UN recently announced it’s the worst humanitarian crisis in their history:
‘’ The United Nations says flooding in Pakistan is the biggest humanitarian crisis in its history.
The UN says the disaster has already affected more people than the 2004 tsunami and the recent earthquake in Haiti combined’’
The challenges then are unprecedented with now two major immediate to medium term concerns materialising. What these challenges have exposed is the weakness of the Pakistani State (regardless of which political party assumes office) and the fragile and under developed nature of civilian administration.
The first is the threat of disease and the second of food security, but the matter for grave concern is that the mobilisation of aid and relief has still been slow. However, the aforementioned threats seem the biggest challenges posed by the floods, as their effect and the needed response will span months. Continue reading
By Sabihuddin Ghausi
In the next few weeks, just after Eid, the Sindh government is going to launch one of its ambitious programmes, land for the landless.
While not very impressive in number of beneficiaries — less than 14,000 in first phase — the message of the programme is quite significant. Each hari family will be given two to eight acres of barrage land. Continue reading
The neglected landless
Dr. Zafar Altaf
Pakistan has as much as 44 percent landless in the country and the number is growing because the ability of the agriculture sector to absorb them in gainful employment is limited. Percentage terms create an illusion that is not necessary and, therefore, I will be discussing absolute numbers. The number of landless by provinces would indicate where poverty is rampant and where the numbers are less. But that by itself may not be correct because the number of landless may be indicated as not so severe in Balochistan whereas the fact is that it is the most seriously affected province and the severely handicapped province has been made to suffer even more because the current fight against terror has severely affected the trading possibilities that were present in the province.
I always maintained that Quetta area was and is where success of capitalism is visible. Government officials used to talk of smuggling and I used to talk of free trade. Quetta serves as a prime example of faulty man-made policies, a fetish to try and control every aspect of human life. This attitude emanates from the colonialist era when their colonial masters tyrannised the subcontinent subjects. Continue reading
Filed under poverty, Rural