Everyone in Pakistan is horrified by how much flooding has increased hardships for the people surviving in the affected flood areas.
Pakistan was always known to be vulnerable to climate shocks as geographically the country is a mix of glaciers, deserts, and fertile lands.
A cosmopolitan city like Karachi which is closer to sea level can be impacted badly if the sea level rises. The chances of sea level rising can occur more rapidly as global warming has managed to turn the normal monsoon seasons into extreme weather conditions.
Due to global warming affecting climate change, Pakistan recorded the highest rainfall in April.
The sad part is our government was well aware of our country’s weak capability to bear a monstrous flood as they had witnessed the terrifying flood of 2010.
Despite having a National Disaster Management Authority Department, the government was unable to create safety plans to discourage the damages caused by the Pakistan flood of 2022.
As responsible citizens of Pakistan, we should ask the government why there was a communication gap between the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and meteorological offices.
Why were they not prepared to save the people and their livelihoods with proper safety plans in order?
Obviously, when we ask such questions they don’t have a satisfactory answer to offer but if you ask them how much Pakistan has a loan, then they would proudly admit to having debits over 50 trillion without a sign of shame.
Pakistan Floods 2022 Economic Impacts
With the devastating flood of 2022, there has been a loss of around $10 billion dollars with crops, road networks, and bridges damaged. The government is busy trying to take control of the economic crisis in the country.
Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif has decided to accept the painful alterations to meet conditions to restart an International Monetary Fund’s Plan.
Post the flooding, the IMF decided to grant a loan of $1.1 billion to the affected country. The given amount is a part of the IMF's special drawing rights. The IMF has been generous enough to increase the bail-out package up to $ 7 billion in order to help the country’s economy.
If you are wondering how much Pakistan has to pay the IMF? The answer might surprise you, Pakistan owes a whopping amount of 5194.24 Million to IMF to date.
Not sure if the economy is getting better anytime soon as inflation is rising rapidly and foreign currency reserves are at precarious lows. The generous help of the IMF seems worthless as the Pakistan flood of 2022 has created damages that seem beyond repairs at the current time.
The flood has massively destroyed crops, and agricultural products, and increased food inflation along with shortage.
Pakistan floods 2022 economic impacts are quite shocking as its GDP has faced a drastic drop from 5% to 2%. Although the Prime Minister is desperately trying to take over the damage control.
Shahbaz Sharif has announced plans to create a National Flood Response and Condition Center with a group of federal ministers, representatives of armed forces, and chief ministers to provide a reaction to the floods.
The Pakistani Government has also announced to join hands with the United Nations to provide food, security, primary health services, water, sanitation, and education support to the victims.
Keeping in mind how much flooding has increased, it may take several months for flood water to withdraw from the affected areas and receive help for the victims. The government has committed to the Flood Relief Cash Assistance Program to provide help to all the affected people in every province.
Despite the fact that Imran Khan is not the active prime minister of the country. He has still managed to raise a good amount of money for the relief of the flood victims in a telethon.
This action acted as a sign of how his popularity and likeness among Pakistani people was able to get some help to the survivors of the natural disaster.
How many Dams are there in Pakistan?
No matter how much Pakistan has a loan from the IMF, we as a nation need to take measures in order to stabilize our economy and create plans to save the country from such dramatic natural disasters.
Our government might be showing us that they are attempting to put everything together but they are not trying hard enough. One of the most important factors that every country needs in order to save themselves from floods is Dams.
They play an important role in storing flooded waters that stop them from reaching people and destroying their livelihoods. Pakistan so far owns a total number of 150 dams only.
Whereas India has already constructed around 4300 dams. Such facts and figures are shameful to us as a nation but most importantly it should be a shameful fact for our so-called leaders, who don’t bother to construct the basic necessities for a developing nation.
The biggest dam in Pakistan is Tarbela which is built over the Indus River. Most of the dams are located in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
The dams are important to build as they control floods, produce electricity, and restore the supply of water. Several dams were damaged in the monstrous flood.
The Meerani Dam in turbat has overflowed, while the water level of Hub Dam has risen up to 339 feet. Dams such as Shadi Kor in Gwadar have their water level raised up to 54 meters.
The Sukkur Barrage is in its worst condition as it is the center point of dead bodies of young children and women. The Guddu barrage was also reported to have increased its water level in 24 hours due to the flash flood.
No matter how much Pakistan has to pay the IMF, with the list of damages across the country, it seems impossible to see Pakistan out of the debt any time soon.
With a mere number of dams and poor management by our government, the country seems to lose the value of its economy day by day.
The government surely has plans to take care of the damage made by the flood but there are no given guarantees that they would fulfill their promises.
The ideal example would be the flood of 2010, which caused massive damage to the country and yet our government has not managed to learn a lesson from it and they seem to be still clueless at the time of the Pakistan flood of 2022.
Maybe taking down Imran Khan as the prime minister of Pakistan was the most foolish decision our country ever made. And reelecting him will manage to save Pakistan from further downfalls.
Maybe, we can actually achieve the dream of living in “Naya Pakistan” and grant a secure future for the next generation.
Maybe, we can take out Pakistan from the heavy debt and improve its economy.
These are just a bunch of maybes. I hope we are intelligent enough to realize our mistakes and sail our damaged boat in the right direction instead of sailing it into a cyclone while it holds the capabilities to ride smoothly across the ocean.
But it seems like we are determined for it to drown even if it is at the cost of our loved ones.
© 2022 Ammar Qadir