KARACHI: Founder of the #FixIt campaign, Alamgir Khan, managed to collect more than Rs1 million in his 10-day ‘begging’ drive at the Teen Talwar signal in Clifton.
Khan revealed on Wednesday the amount generated through the drive during a press conference at Teen Talwar after he arrived along with a brand new tractor, which was bought from the money they raised. The daily six-hour-long drive was initiated by Khan and his team of volunteers on January 13 and ended on January 22.
“We cannot work with limited resources. Therefore, we approached the general public in order to generate funds and then finally managed to collect Rs1.145m of which we bought a new tractor worth Rs1.1m,” said Khan while sharing details of the fundraising campaign.
Referring to late philanthropist Abdul Sattar Edhi as his inspiration, Khan mentioned that he [Edhi] too used to reach out to the public for funds.
“It is the responsibility of the government to solve civic issues but since they do not seem interested, team #FixIt will run a parallel system alongside that of the government’s to solve the civic issues of the city,” claimed Khan, adding that this is similar to how an ambulance service should have been provided by the government but then Edhi was the one who developed a huge ambulance network throughout the country.
Sharing his plan, Khan said that they to want raise the number of tractors, five tractors for each district and #FixIt offices in all the union councils.
“Up till now, it has been the generous business community who has been providing us with funds including the tractor,” said Khan, mentioning that the #FixIt team has decided to reach out to the public to expand their services.
Working together with 500 active volunteers, Khan said that it was a great experience as everyone helped generously, regardless of their social class. He added that mostly it was the young women who donated and apart from them, celebrities, policemen and government officials too helped. “Even the beggars at the Teen Talwar signal contributed between Rs20 and Rs50,” said Khan.
“This is a message for the local government representatives who make excuses of having no powers,” said Khan, adding that serving the people only requires will and nothing else.
Every month, the #FixIt volunteers, including me, will launch this drive which will most probably take place at the same location since it is a posh area where we are able to collect more funds, informed Khan.
“We were also asked to stop by DMC South officials and were told that ‘begging’ is illegal but we told them that they should first stop the existing beggars rather than stopping us,” said Khan.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 26th, 2017.