New Jersey, USA: The American Sikh Council (ASC) is very sad and concerned about the massive floods in the south-western part of Pakistan which has put millions of lives in jeopardy. The flooding has affected over 33 million people, over 600,000 are currently in relief camps and since mid-June has left nearly one third of the country under water. At least 1,500 people have been killed as of September 15, 2022.
Across the country, about 150 bridges and 2,200 miles of roads have been destroyed, according to Relief-Web. More than 700,000 livestock and 3 million acres of crops and orchards have also been lost.
The environmental crisis is of biblical proportions covering over 95,0000 square miles as of August.
Sikhs loading supplies to help in the relief effort in the Sialkot area of Pakistan
In addition, Pakistan is gripped by an economic crisis, with an inflation rate of 27 percent for the month of August, according to official reports. The Pakistani rupee has crashed, and net foreign reserves have fallen to just $8 billion. Meanwhile, continued political instability due to a showdown involving the government, the military, and the former Prime Minister threatens to complicate the task of responding to the disaster and rebuilding.
According to news reports, the planning Minister Ahsan Iqbal estimates it may cost at least $10 billion to rebuild. On September 3, he stated it was the worst climate-induced disaster in recent world history and called on the international community to launch an immense humanitarian response.
The International Monetary Fund on Monday approved the release of $1.1 billion to Pakistan in special drawing rights, a part of its bailout program which began in 2019.
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Sikhs and other locals preparing food packets to help the flood victims
The common people are in dire need of help as they have lost everything, except the clothes on their back. The Pakistan army and multiple emergency services are working non-stop to assist in the flood relief effort.
All kinds of aid are needed, including temporary accommodation, medical supplies, sanitary items, clean drinking water, food packs and various other kinds of sewa. The American Sikh Council (ASC) humbly requests Sikhs across the globe to help support the relief effort in any way they can, in order to reduce the pain and suffering of millions of families. ASC requests Sikhs and others to donate by clearly earmarking the funds for the ‘Pakistan Floods Relief’ and we will forward the funds to the reliable agencies providing aid on the ground. www.americansikhcouncil.org
The American Sikh Council is the umbrella organization representative of Sikhs in the United States. It is an elected body of Sikh Gurdwaras and institutions. Currently 74 Gurdwaras and other Sikh institutions across the nation are members of ASC. The major governing purpose of the organization is to represent the collective view of Sikhs in the United States. ASC works to promote Sikh interests at the national and international level focusing on issues of advocacy, education, and well-being of humankind.