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  • Sindh, Balochistan hit by flash floods; Ban appeals for aid

    Published on August 15, 2010

    UN chief Ban Ki-moon on Sunday appealed for more aid to Pakistan for the 20 million victims, as flash floods wrecked havoc in Sindh and Balochistan provinces rendering thousands homeless, leading to large scale migration of people from the affected region.

    After causing havoc in the Khyber Pakhtunkhawa and Punjab provinces and in the northern areas, floods have now ravaged the provinces of Sindh and Balochistan.

    Authorities say until now the floods have left around four million homeless and killed some 2,000 people.

    Met office officials said that in last 24 hours, flood waters had breached protective bunds and swept across large swathes of Balochistan’s Jafferabad district and in the Jacobabad, Umerkot, Larkana and Sukkur areas in Sindh forcing large scale evacuation of villages.

    The floods have affected 20 million people, destroyed standing crops and food storages worth billions of dollars causing a colossal loss to the national economy.

    United Nations secretary-general Ban reached Islamabad and said the whole world stood behind Pakistan, after the country’s devastating floods and pledged to mobilise all necessary assistance in affected areas.

    “I am here to see what more needs to be done and to urge the world community to speed up the assistance to the Pakistan people,” he said.

    Waters 1.5 meters deep washed through Derra Allah Yar, a city of 300,000 people on the border of Sindh and Baluchistan provinces, said a government official.

    About 200,000 people had fled the city. Rescue officials and authorities said that people were forced to shelter under the open skies as they saw their homes being washed away.

    Hundreds of villages in Jacobabad district in Sindh were under water and national highways and other major roads in the province were cut off from the rest of the country.

    Floodwaters have inundated several villages and the affected people are facing huge problems in relocation due to the unavailability of transportation.

    Barrages and dams in the region are all overflowing and the surging floodwaters have washed away sections of railway tracks connecting the province.

    The district administration of Jaffarabad in Balochistan province asked the people to evacuate as breaches in a number of embankments on the Indus sent torrents of water rushing in.

    Police were informing people on loudspeakers about the flood and asking them to move to safer places. Officials said up to 10 feet of water caused a widespread devastation in Dera Allah Yar a town in Jafferabad district demolishing hundreds of houses and destroying the city’s infrastructure. According to reports, 10 people were swept away in the flood water.

    In addition, the torrent entered Rojhan Jamali, Kashmir Kot and Sohnipur, forcing the people to flee the scene.