Children die of hunger as rain cuts off village

Published: September 16, 2012

PDMA admits it can’t manage alone, appeals for assistance. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

ISLAMABAD / JACOBABAD / THUL: 

Two children – seven-year-old Hajiran Banglani and Saeeda Banglani, 5 – died of starvation in Sindh on Saturday after their village was cut-off from the nearest town following torrential rains.

“Our children had not taken sufficient food the last few days. They died of hunger and we could do nothing for them,” said their father, Qaimuddin Banglani, in a village some 15 kilometres from Thul city.

Meanwhile, eight more people, including four children, died across Jacobabad district in rain-related accidents on Saturday.

Living under bare sky

Four hundred flood-affected families from various villages are living under open sky in Bahu Khoso, after the district was inundated following heavy rains last week.

The district government has not provided them relief goods, including food and tents, and the villagers attacked a charitable organisation’s relief goods vehicle for food.

“No one has visited us yet. There is no medical facility. Our children are dying of hunger and diseases,” Banglani, who lost his two children, added.

Waterborne diseases

Authorities, meanwhile, have warned against an outbreak of waterborne diseases in Sindh as death toll in the province climbed to 106, with 360 injured. “Lives of over 100,000 people are at risk with the outbreak of waterborne diseases,” said Dr Dara, who is dealing with health issues in Kashmore, one of the worst-affected districts in Sindh.

The lives of children are also at risk from malnutrition, watery diarrhea and dysentery, said the director general of the Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA), Hashim Zaidi.

PDMA struggling

Zaidi said the PDMA is struggling to provide basic healthcare to around two million people affected in Jacobabad, Shikarpur, Kashmore, Badin, Hyderabad and other districts of the province, but added: “We can’t fight with this natural disaster alone. We badly need assistance from both national and international organisations.” The PDMA also said that over 0.4 million acres of crops have been washed away in 19 districts of the province while over 0.1 million houses are damaged, rendering 0.1 million people homeless.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 16th, 2012.

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