The earthquake of 7.6 Richter
scale has completely destroyed many areas of
The mammoth death toll keeps
rocketing as the relief work intensifies and crushed bodies are recovered.
The official estimate is in thousands but the NGOs claim that the toll is
very much high. The Edhi Foundation representative in
The priority right now is not of tracing, counting and burying the
dead bodies, which are already badly decomposed and beyond burial, but to
rescue the survivors and help the worst affected people including elderly,
women and children. The most affected by this tragedy are children. The
United Nations has appealed for at least $272 million to meet the
immediate needs of the rescue and relief teams.
amount needed for immediate and short term help could easily top at least
$500 million figure. Long term plan is not a consideration right now,
particularly when focus is on rescue of survivors and protection of people
from hunger, diseases, severe weather. The most immediate need is to
protect people from the claws and jaws of death.
DONATIONS IN CASH NEEDED: The tragedy
has shocked the whole world. Donations in cash and kind are urgently and
badly needed and pouring in from all corners of the world. Donation in
cash is preferred and considered the best way to help them. The need is
extremely great and requires greater and rapid response. Every second and
cent counts and could help save many precious lives. Delay is definitely
to the UN official in
seventy helicopters are in service now in the affected area. What the
people need urgently include right medicines for Hepatitis A, Pneumonia,
Typhoid, antibiotics of second and third generation and equipment for
small surgical procedures.
Karygiannis, MP, like always acted swiftly and contributed tremendously in
inviting attention of the government for a quick and generous response. He
was also praised by Prime Minister Paul Martin for his efforts which
produced positive results and put pressure on the government to increase
the aid amount. Both Jim and Frank Klees, MPP, are veteran and very
popular parliamentarians. They work very closely and sincerely with
community people and leaders to help them and thatís why are highly
respected in the community and their constituencies.
COMMUNITY LEADERS: Wajid Ali Khan, MP, was praised by Prime
Minister Paul Martin for his tremendous efforts and role in helping the
government in this connection. The PM made this remark in reply to a
question during the Press Conference after meeting with Pakistani
is a fresh member of the parliament but by winning a place in the
parliament has made the Pakistani and Muslim communities proud. The
community leaders, however, are closely monitoring his attitude, approach
and contribution based on the track record and hope that he would not
disappoint or let them down. He will be judged by his contribution and
role as a community leader.
want to make sure that Wajid practically and sincerely serves the
Pakistani and Muslim communities as well along with interest of the party.
This way he can win trust and confidence of the people, like Jim
Karygiannis, Frank Klees and many other non-community leaders.
most of the community leaders when they get positions or achieve success
become tin gods, start neglecting the community members and prove great
disappointment. Instead of becoming a blessing they become a serious
problem for the community. Thatís why the community becomes very
cautious and does not trust them.
GHALIBíS APPEAL: Ghalib
Iqbal, Consul General of Pakistan in
Jim Karygiannis conducted the
proceedings and assured the leaders and journalists that Canadians would
always remain in the forefront in helping the people
hour of crisis and disasters.
Iqbal appealed for generous donations in cash and kind. He said the people
He asked the people to donate in the
Any branch of Royal Bank of
Any branch of Bank of Montreal (A/C No. 3214-1002-807).
Habib Canadian Bank (A/C No.113093). One branch in Mississauga at 918,
Dundas Street East, Suite 1-B, Mississauga, ON., L4Y 4H9 and a booth at
the Consulate General of Pakistan, Suite 402, 240-Duncan Mills Road, North
York, ON., M3B 1Z4, Canada.
said that the immediate disaster needs in the areas most affected by this
Shelter (Tents, plastic sheets, blankets, mattresses).
Food items (Pre-cooked tin food, high energy biscuits and survival
Medicines (antibiotic, typhoid medication, fracture related kits, first
aid kits, surgical instruments and water purification tablets).
Equipment (Electricity generators, water purification kits/small plants
and disinfectant sprays).
Wajid Ali Khan was happy that
the government reacted immediately to the call. He said that the situation
was very critical and the top most priority is to rescue survivors.
that it is time to think as to what we can do as a community.
a member of the City Council, said that the Pakistani community is a very
large community of
CENTRALIZED COLLECTION: Shahid Hashmi
said that all the donations particularly Zakat and Fitra of any amount
should be made in the
He said that we cannot do
anything for those killed but at least can rescue and save those who
survived. Priority should be given to saving lives of survivors who are
shelter less and helpless.
Shahid Hashmi, a renowned social figure, remained very active in the
donation campaigns and kept motivating many organizations and individuals
and managed to help collect very good amount.
At a meeting with ICNA Canada officials, he shared the idea that
fundraising be organized by all organizations at one place. All the money
coming from the event should be deposited in the relief fund. The cost of
the dinner should be borne by the organizations.
said that the Canadian government should expedite the relief process to
help save lives, particularly of seniors, women and children.
During announcement of the $20
million aid, Jim Karygiannis gave two valuable suggestions to the
ministers and officials present: 1) One time charity number should be
allowed and 2) Fast track immigration process to help those affected by
the devastating quake. Children who lost everything must be helped,
supported and brought to
UNITED: Since the tragedy took
place, so many community meetings have taken place for donations and help.
Both the individuals and organizations have become very active and are
working closely. This demonstration of unity is a good sign for the
community. It is essential to set aside differences and work as a team to
help the needy people.