Pakistan Needs to Do More to Avert a Food Crisis

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Pakistan’s economic crises is creating a humanitarian crisis. Breadlines are growing, people’s desperation is hitting a high under galloping inflation. This is one of the reasons for the tragedy that recently happened in Karachi when women, accompanied by children, gathered at an industrial unit in the city’s SITE area to collect food aid and zakat being distributed by the factory’s owner. Panic ensued when staffers reportedly closed the doors, resulting in the death of at least 12 people.

This is not the first such incident over the last few months – several people died at official free flour distribution events in KP and Punjab.

 

With inflation unlikely to ease anytime soon, as an Editorial in Dawn noted, “efforts need to be made by the state and others with means to help the poor as well as the ‘new poor’ to get by with dignity. Better organisation is the key to preventing the tragic deaths and injuries that have been occurring at charity distribution points. For the state, the distribution of food aid or cash needs to be streamlined and transparent. Inviting hundreds of people to stand in line is obviously not the most efficient way to get help to people.”

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Author: Nasim Hussain