Voice of the People


Articles and letters may be edited for the purposes of clarity and space. They are published in good faith with a view to enlightening all the stakeholders. However, the contents of these writings may not necessarily match the views of the newspaper.

Rosie Gabrielle

The 31-year old Rosie Gabrielle from Vancouver Canada who travelled across Pakistan as a solo bike-rider embraced Islam. Welcome Rosie Gabrielle to Islam, a religion of peace, love and tolerance. A complete code of life and religion of billions of people who respect human beings and treat everyone on an equal basis. The Muslim lady has a lot of praises for Pakistan where she received great hospitality, love and kindness. She received most of the things free of cost during her visit ensuring how nice people are here. That opened new vistas of hope about religion which she had abandoned four years ago.
According to her visit of Pakistan connected her with the Creator and after due meditation she has now been converted to Islam.Pakistan has remained a victim of terrorism for decades. For Pakistan she says , “Pakistan has suffered greatly in past years due to the continuous negative image the media portrays. Since many years now, they aren’t used to seeing tourists. So they’re overjoyed to see a foreigner, not because I’m anyone special but because it gives them hope. Hope that Pakistan will once again be recognised for the beautiful country it is and the true heart of people will be seen.” Now Rosie is a new ROSE for Islam and Pakistan. Long live Pakistan.

Karachi’s water problem

With a population of over 20M people, Karachi’s water crisis has caught the attention of people around the globe. The city has two main sources of water, the Indus River which supplies around 645MGD water of which around 450MGD is accumulated by the city due to the lack of resources at the Dhabeji Pumping Station and the Hub River Dam which supplies from 50MGD to 100MGD of water as it is mostly rain fed. The Karachi Water & Sewerage Board (KWSB) has reported that the demand of water in Karachi is around 1188MGD; however it only accumulates 550MGD at max.
There is a lot of talk regarding the K-4 water project, designed to supply another 250-260MGD of water daily to Karachi. However it’s been more than a decade and the project is yet to complete, the then Mayor Syed Mustafa Kamal, who conceived the project back in 2010 said in a recent interview that due to lack of planning and commitment the situation has become worse, even K-4 project will not be able to meet needs of the city.
Though there are official hydrants which legally provide water to tankers many illegal hydrants are operating throughout the city which in 2018 was reported to generate around USD 550 million per annum, the KWSB reports this as Nonrevenue water and is silent about this theft giving the impression that this water is lost due to leakages. The pressure on the provincial government has never been greater as this issue is being immensely highlighted. Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah had also stated that the provincial government will work towards building desalination plants to tackle water shortage.
Being an economic hub Pakistanis from every corner of the country come to Karachi in search of a better future and livelihood, demand for water is increasing day by day, the governments need to buckle up and complete all pending projects be it the K-4 project or the desalination plant, there should also be a strict operation against illegal hydrants and the tanker mafia supplying water throughout the city, water being a basic necessity does not need to be paid for.
Via email

Islamic banking vs conventional banking!

There is a lot debate on Islamic Banking being Shariah compliant itself, I have been using the services of different Islamic banks only because the concept has been cleared, approved and managed by religious scholars. The point that worries me in this regard is that in some forms the conventional banking still exists, for example penalty on late payments.
In addition to that on my recent out of country trip I noticed that on usage of debit card abroad a fix fee is being charged of up to Rs 50 varying as per banks. Now this fee cannot be Islamic, I am sure. However, if someone could reply and prove that it is not, I shall be glad to accept.
Via email

Environmental case study of city of light

Karachi is the industrial financial backbone of Pakistan with an annual GDP of more than 25% of the total GDP of Pakistan and also shares 65% to the national revenue of Pakistan. Unfortunately, Karachi is ignored due to political interests and unawareness of the people. Karachi is facing the problems of overpopulation soon after independence.
Overpopulation by itself is a great threat to Karachi, now it reaches such proportions that it is almost difficult to manage and if it continues with this progress the life of the people will almost impossible because it leads to several environmental and health issues. The situation is so dangerous that Karachi has become the world’s least safe city due to a large number of deaths from environmental issues. This is time to take several serious steps to overcome these issues by framing new policies.
Awareness regarding these environmental issues should be generated among the people through conducting seminars and in speeches at school, college, and university levels, even in mosques, especially on Fridays. Additionally, there should be a compulsory subject regarding environmental threats and challenges in educational institutions. More importantly, a Fund should be launched to handle such kind of environmental problems in the city of light i.e. Karachi.
District Bajaur

Crimean-Congo virus

Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) is a tick-borne fatal disease having high mortality rate with case fatality up to 50% caused by CCHF Virus. This is a zoonotic disease caused by the biting of infected ticks to human or from direct contact with the body fluids of infected animals or human beings having viremia. Due to the limited resources and improper diagnostic facilities in Pakistan, a vast majority of cases either remain undiagnosed or misdiagnosed. Due to which the disease may persist in convalescent form in the persons inhabiting the disease endemic area.
A serological survey of CCHF in different districts of Punjab province was performed in our study and different risk factors associated with the seroprevalence of CCHFV in human beings were also evaluated. The inhabitants of endemic areas of Punjab province like Chakwal, Rawalpindi, Mianwali, Attock and Dera Ghazi Khan are at more risk of getting CCHFV infection than inhabitants of non-endemic districts (Rahim Yar Khan, Jehlum, Gujrat and Lahore). In our study tick infestation, profession length, areas having previous exposure of CCHFV infection, age more than 40 year and illiteracy were found to be highly associated with the CCHFV infection.
By keeping these risk factors in mind, new preventive strategies should be adopted in areas having previous exposure of CCHFV. The focus is, therefore, on awareness and education efforts with regard to reducing transmission risk. The persons related to high risk occupation like butchers, animal handlers and para-veterinary workers should adopt preventive measures when dealing with the animals. Safe slaughtering techniques, hygienic measures and proper personal protective equipment should be used by the slaughter-house workers. Tick control strategy should be adopted in high risk areas of Punjab province. For that purpose, tick repellents should be used for animals to avoid tick infestation.
Via email

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