News / Asia

Some Pakistani Flood Victims Camp in Middle of Busy Roadway

These Pakistani flood victims have set up camp near a busy roadway
These Pakistani flood victims have set up camp near a busy roadway

Multimedia

TEXT SIZE - +
Sean Maroney

While the Pakistani government and humanitarian agencies have been making frantic efforts to provide assistance to victims of the country's worst flood disaster, millions still have received little or no help nearly a month later.  

Brightly colored trucks are a common sight speeding down the main roadway linking Pakistan's capital Islamabad to the northwestern city of Peshawar.  Vehicles on this road can exceed 140 kilometers per hour as they speed down two lanes on either side of a narrow strip of land.

It is on this small unpaved portion between the lanes of traffic near the Kabul River that you can see tents and plastic sheeting stretching far out of sight.

Orange cones block one lane of traffic on either side, and groups of children and men of all ages tiredly stare at the passing vehicles, alternating between swatting at the countless flies and holding out their hands for any form of assistance.  Nearly 500 families of roughly seven members each now call this home.

Mohammad Jan tells VOA his family, including four children, had been staying at a converted school in Peshawar, a common form of shelter for many flood victims.  But he says the camp closed because classes had restarted after the summer break.  This caused him to take his family back to their nearby flooded house.

But he says he is glad to spend most of his time on this high-traffic road.  He says at the other place, they were not receiving aid.  He says that now on the busy roadway, they are getting enough aid.

But from under plastic sheeting, Saif-ul-Islam says the road is a dangerous alternative.  He says that here, they also are facing many problems.  He recalls that a few accidents have taken place where children had been hit by cars.

Every other day, Dr. Shafique, the Peshawar District surgeon, distributes medicine from two vans.  He points to large, greenish pools of standing water that lie among the tents as sources of disease.  He says that combined with the volume of traffic and lack of electricity, the victims face many hazards.

"I think [it is] better for them to go back to their relief camps or some big refugee camps, not this.  This is haphazard I think, but it is better than nothing," said Dr. Shafique.

The flooding in Pakistan has killed an estimated 1,600 people and completely inundated villages, infrastructure and farmland, leaving almost five-million people homeless.

The Pakistani government has promised to give $230 to each family affected by the floods.  But for the people living along the roadway to Peshawar, they say this is nowhere near enough to reclaim their lives.

You May Like

Abuja Blast Impacts Lives, Livelihoods

Officials say they are looking at ways to help bombing victims and boosting security More

Cambodia Technology Adviser Criticizes Cybercrime Draft Law

Phu Leewood says current criminal code can be used to prosecute offenders and that there is no need for a separate law More

Photogallery A Year Later, Boston Remembers Deadly Marathon Bombings

City pauses to honor victims and salute emergency workers who came to their assistance in frantic moments after blasts More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid