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Long wait for thousands of stranded Pakistanis | Pk Geo News

By Haris Afzal on Friday, August 27, 2010 with 0 comments

SAEEDABAD: Hakim Machhi has been camped out on a river bank for three days, waiting in vain for Pakistani aid workers to pluck him to safety after stinking flood waters swallowed up his home.

About 50 families lived in the remote village of Alan Suhebjo, 30 kilometres (19 miles) north of Hyderabad in southern Sindh province, but their homes have disappeared under water in Pakistan's worst humanitarian disaster.

Around 10 kilometres from the nearest town of Saeedabad, the village is largely isolated from the state-sponsored and mainstream independent relief operations straining to cope with a crisis that has hit 17 million.

Instead villagers fell back on their resourcefulness, decamping to a nearby embankment and collection of mud huts already abandoned by their occupants too frightened by rising waters.

Children swam through the putrid flood. Wives and daughters busied themselves with what household chores they could do. Men took it in turns to keep watch over the rising waters and trudged into Saeedabad for help.

"We're finishing our food reserves and our children are getting sick with no medical help forthcoming," said Machhi, shirtless and with his skin burnt by the sun.

"We are trying to get transport to go to a relief camp but no one's here to help us," the 35-year-old said.

Mohammad Sohrab, 50, a grey-haired peasant cradling a newborn baby in his lap, blamed the government led by President Asif Ali Zardari.

"Our rulers come here to seek votes whenever they fight elections but in this time of distress no one's here to take care of us. We're dying and the government is doing nothing to save our children," Sohrab said.

The United Nations warned that 800,000 people in desperate need of aid had been cut off by the deluge across the country and appealed for more helicopters to deliver supplies to those people reachable only by air.

Category: Pakistan News

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