Warrior without weapon
The International Day of Red Cross and Red Crescent is celebrated worldwide on May 08 every year.
The distinct feature of this movement is armless struggle for the emancipation of the suffering humanity.
The Red Cross & Red Crescent volunteers in whatever capacity or position they use to work, will keep them without weapon even if there is a security threat to them.
War is not always described in terms of invasion, battle or bloodshed. It is also fought without weapons.
The war against ignorance and illiteracy is waged without ammunition. Mind-set does not need arms or ammunition to combat.
To help humanity both in times of conflict and peace basically requires the tool of humanitarian facilitation.
The movement of the Red Cross & Red Crescent can be termed as the ‘warrior without weapon’. The scope of the worldwide humanitarian campaign continues during war and peace alike.
The Red Cross / Red Crescent strictly neutral and impartial worldwide organization is dedicated to humanitarian interests in general and to alleviating human suffering is composed of three basic elements like self-governing national units operating voluntarily on democratic principles.
The history of the Red Cross Movement is more than 150 years old. It was started in 1863; since then, Red Cross has figured several times in the award of the Nobel Peace Prize as well as in the award to Henri Dunant in 1901 and has therefore been made the subject of various presentations which give details of the inception of the Red Cross Movement.
The Red Cross & Red Crescent organization further has an international federation of national societies to coordinate the efforts of national committees.
Another important organ of the movement is the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) as an independent agency.
It would be interesting to note that some of the functions of Red Cross & Red Crescent organization are older than that of the United Nations (UNO).
History tells us that the operation of the Red Cross & Red Crescent is more result oriented than any other world body. Pakistan joined the Red Cross Movement in 1947.
The Constitution of Pakistan Red Crescent Society (PRCS) needs improvement in the light of experiences of the last seven decades.
It is unfortunate that the building constructed for the Blood Bank by PRCS in Karachi has no more the facility of blood collection and transfusion which is the fundamental requirement of any Red Crescent / Red Cross unit to be operated during war and peace together. It is also the requirement of the Armed Forces in times of conflicts.
It is hoped that Governor Sindh Imran Ismail who is also the President of PRCS (Sindh), Vice President Dr. Sardar Muhammad Yasin Malik and Chairperson Shahnaz Hamid will strive to revive the Blood Bank services in Karachi.
—The writer is contributing columnist, based in Karachi.