The UN’s World Food Programme (WFP) says that ongoing monsoon flooding in Sindh Province in Pakistan has left 300,000 people in need of food assistance.
As many as 136 people have died in rain- and flood-related incidents in the province so far this monsoon. A total of 77,343 houses have been destroyed and 137,178 homes damaged.
Severe flooding began in some areas in early August. As of 22 September, WFP said that thousands of families displaced by the floods are still living by the side of the road, with little chance of returning home for at least another month. While rains have stopped, many areas remain flooded and stagnant water is posing major health, nutrition and shelter issues, WFP added.
Some flood-victims have found temporary accommodation in relief camps. As of 26 September Pakistan’s National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) reported there were 196 relief camps in operation in Sindh, housing 23,629 people.
Sindh’s Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) has distributed relief items in affected districts, including almost 85,000 tents, mostly in the districts of Dadu (7,238 tents), Badin (12,790), Sujawal (8,410), Tando Muhammad Khan (5,800), Sanghar (12,531), Mirpurkhas (14,637) and Umerkot (14,699).
Flooding in Sindh Since mid August 2020
Severe flooding in the province began in early August when around 50 villages in Dadu district were inundated in early after heavy rain caused damage to the Nai Gaj Dam.
The worst of the flooding came after torrential rainfall during a period 22 to 29 August, including record rainfall in parts of the provincial capital Karachi.
The heavy rain caused several rivers including the Indus to overflow. By early September flooding had affected nearly 2.5 million across 15,000 villages in the province, in particular in Mirpurkhas and Umerkot districts. Furthermore over 400,000 hectares of crops have been damaged.
On 28 August, the NDMA asked WFP to provide food assistance to flood-affected people in Sindh. After initial assessments in 9 districts, WFP reported around 300,000 people were in need of food assistance.
“The situation in rural areas is extremely worrying, both in terms of immediate humanitarian needs and longer-term impacts on livelihoods, food security and nutrition. While rains have stopped, many areas remain flooded and stagnant water is posing major health, nutrition and shelter issues.
“Thousands of families displaced by the floods are still living by the side of the road, with little chance of returning home for at least another month and no employment opportunities in view given large-scale crop and livestock losses,” WFP said.
2020 Monsoon in Pakistan
Monsoon rainfall in Pakistan has taken a heavy toll this year, according to figures from the country’s National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA).
As of 26 September, 400 people had lost their lives and 392 people were injured as a result of heavy rainfall and monsoon conditions.
The worst hit provinces include Sindh, with 136 fatalities, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with 116 and Punjab with 104.