One-third of Pakistan is under water and 3.3 crore of its citizens have been hit by floods, the country’s Climate Change Minister Sherry Rehman said on Monday, reported Sky News.
The floods have left 1,136 persons dead in the country with a population of 22 crore since the monsoon began in June, according to AFP.
Rehman described the unfolding situation as a huge humanitarian disaster and said that she would call it “quite apocalyptic”.
Pakistan received 388.7 mm of rain this year. This is almost three times the country’s national rainfall average of 134 mm. In August alone, the country received 166.8 millimetres of rain, according to the National Disaster Management Authority. The increase in rainfall have resulted in flash floods across the country.
On Thursday, the country announced a national emergency in the wake of the devastating flood situation.
Large tracts of farmland in the provinces of Sindh and Balochistan have reportedly been inundated, while in the northern parts of Pakistan, rivers have washed away roads and bridges.
Visuals on social media showed flood water causing extensive damage and washing away a building.
Pakistan’s Planning Minister Ahsan Iqbal said that the floods have caused damage of over $10 billion (about Rs 794.62 billion), according to Reuters. He added that the world had an obligation to help the country deal with the effects of climate change.
Iqbal said that the floods this year are worse than the ones that took place in the country in 2010. In that year, the United Nations had issued its largest ever disaster appeal for assistance to deal with floods that left nearly 2,000 persons dead.
Saddened to see devastation, says Modi
India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said that he was saddened to know about the devastation caused by the floods in Pakistan.
“We extend our heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims, the injured and all those affected by this natural calamity and hope for an early restoration of normalcy,” he said on Twitter.
Discussions were being held at the highest levels in New Delhi on the possibility of extending assistance to Islamabad, according to The Indian Express. India had provided humanitarian assistance to Pakistan after the 2010 floods and the 2005 earthquake.
Meanwhile, several other countries have extended support to Islamabad.
Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said his country is providing food and clean water to Pakistan through United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund and Red Cross Canada to provide food.
United Arab Emirates President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed said that his country will immediately dispatch food supplies, medical, pharmaceutical, tents and shelter materials to Pakistan.
The United Kingdom said it is providing up to 1.5 million pounds to help Pakistan deal with the flood situation.