The lethal pandemic of COVID-19 has hampered all sectors of life in Pakistan. The virus led to the lockdown of countries across the country and Pakistan’s daily wagers and poor are struggling to survive in coronavirus lockdown.
However, the government and certain segments of society are doing their best to help them. But the truth is, a majority of such people are facing hunger and are waiting for some help or a miracle.
Pakistan is the country, which is driven by Islamic cultural norms. Many people here believe in the good of the others; they are a staunch believer in the buoy up of the indigent.
Since the lockdown, which started from the province of Sindh, people and the government together are ensuring the economic survival of the daily laborers.
Our Prime Minister was so right!
The situation is getting worse! We just can’t lockdown the country because of these daily wagers and at the same time we can’t let them go out either.#lockdown #Corona #ImranKhan #Pakistan pic.twitter.com/Uv5MMLan4m
— Abdul Qadeer (@abdulqadeer03) March 30, 2020
How Pakistan is aiding its daily wagers?
On the federal level, Prime Minister Imran Khan announced a relief package. Furthermore, he made the COVID-19 Pandemic Relief Fund-2020 to support the needy ones.
Prime Minister’s COVID-19 Pandemic Relief Fund-2020 has been set up to help us fight this pandemic. I want everyone to donate towards this fund which will be used to take care of all those who have been made destitute by the lockdown.
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) April 1, 2020
Besides, Prime Minister Imran Khan also said, “The government will provide Rs50 billion more to utility stores in the coming months.”. Moreover, the premier reserved 150 Rs billion for indigent families.
The Kyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government has employed around 20,000 blue-collar workers in the development of the green sector. According to reports, every labor will be paid Rs 500 per day.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Government to engage 19,353 daily wage workers in green sector for three months (April, May & June). Every worker will be paid Rs 500 per day.
— F.A.Rehmani Baloch – PTI (Official) (@FARehmaniBaloch) April 5, 2020
According to Chief Minister Balochistan, Jam Kamal, 150 families will be provided rations in the first phase of a food supplying to the daily wagers.
The Ration supplies in all districts have already started from yesterday, in first phase 150,000 families shall be covered
The Taxation exemption on many services works and rest approved and will be a releive
Financial help through BISP n rest is underway too. https://t.co/ZkpOpstMag
— Jam Kamal Khan (@jam_kamal) April 4, 2020
The government of Sindh has done a remarkable job in tackling the pandemic. Besides, the government is committed to supplying ration to the blue-collar laborers on war-footings. Bilawal in a meeting on steps to aid daily wage workers said, “Sindh government should go to every needy person’s house. I will not tolerate any negligence when it comes to helping the poor.”
Presently, the government is providing rations at doorsteps.
Ration distribution at night at doorsteps by Sindh Government through UCs, NGOs and Civil Society. pic.twitter.com/CszQlysMPB
— Nasir Abbasi (@NasirAbbasiPPPP) April 4, 2020
The Punjab government has also established the Tiger force to provide ration and other supplies to the daily wage earners.
Government of Pakistan launches #CoronaTigerForce today.
This network of youth volunteers will be facilitated by the govt to reach out to needy households & supply them with ration. For those who want to join the Corona Tiger Force, download PM Citizens’ portal app to register. pic.twitter.com/4CmS1u6PDm
— PTI North Punjab (@PtiNorthPunjab) March 31, 2020
Common Pakistanis and their generosity
The generosity of Pakistanis is world-famous. They are known for their hospitality and charity work and amid the COVID-19 crisis, Pakistanis are doing heir best in aiding the reprived families.
Distribution of ration in Quetta
— Atta Mengal (@Attamengal11) May 28, 2018
A man distributing ration in Quetta
My uncle with His ‘Kasi Madadgar Welfare’ has done alot for needy people in Quetta he has now began with an appreciable task of providing 30 days ration to the people suffering from hunger in this pandemic.
— ÚmŔæ🇵🇰 (@being_umra) March 31, 2020
Jamat-e-Islami Karachi distributing the food supplies
Amid worst outbreak of COVID-19 (coronavirus) across the country, 1000s of daily-wage workers are left jobless. The volunteers of @AlkhidmatOrg Pakistan continue to take care of such families across the country through distribution of cooked food and ration. JI_ReliefActivities pic.twitter.com/HlSOVSufhL
— Jamaat e Islami Karachi (Official) (@KarachiJamaat) March 20, 2020
Despite the efforts of civil society and government, there is an unequal distribution of ration. Many laborers and, people belonging to lower-middle-class families are still waiting for the messiah to come and provide them food. Following this, certain reactions came on social media platforms.
People are concerned about PM’s ‘COVID-19 Pandemic Relief Fund’
Where is the dam fund? Where has it been utilized? Who will monitor this #COVID2019 fund? Any 3rd party evaluation plan? How much you n ur business tycoons in cabinet and kitchen cabinet wl contribute? And finally why to endanger the lives of untrained youngsters as #Cronatiger?
— fehmi I bercha (@bercha_i) April 1, 2020
Some people have serious trust issues with the PM’s cabinet
Sorry we don’t trust you and the people around you. We will give our money to Edhi Trust
— Dr Ayesha (@Dr_AyeshaNavid) April 1, 2020
He is asking for the proof of ration supplies from the CM Balochistan
Where is proof of 150,000 families shall
— Kamran Khan Kakar (@KamranKhanKaka3) April 5, 2020
People asking for rations from the Sindh Government
We request Sindh government to start ration distribution now…. Its been 2 weeks lockdown now
— Mudassir Siraj (@MudassirPalla) April 5, 2020
Whether the government and civil society are working for the daily wagers or not, their efforts are not enough as the crisis is huge. Sadly, 24% of people in Pakistan live below the poverty line, let alone the daily wagers. The government along with the business community and welfare organizations need to take pragmatic measures to ensure the poor are not neglected during the tough time.
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