Sunday, 9 October 2011

Trip to Shikarpur, post 2010 floods

I recently realised how the nature of power affects people in charge and incites them to deliver false hope to those in need.

After we had distributed all the ration packets, we decided to leave the camp. On my way home the internally displaced persons surrounded me once again.

They demanded from me to write their names on a piece of paper and sign it, so that they could receive a ration packet from the storage room.

This was the strategy we had enforced while distributing rations. However, at this moment my sign had no value since our stock had exhausted.

Regardless of my explanation, this mob was persistent in sharing their story of distress and pain, while concurrently demanding a paper with my signature. Most of them were women and children to whom explaining was akin to speaking to deaf people.

It was a hard day. I repeatedly questioned myself, whether we had distributed the ration equally or not. I was certain that all family heads had received their share and hence these women and children had been equally accounted for.

However, in such traumatic circumstances it is unimaginable to evaluate one`s deeds accurately. Though, I am at least content that I did not give them false hope.

In my view, what endangers them is not hunger or dearth of food, but the lack of an identity. They have always been dependent on others` ideology and are incapable of making decisions on their own.

This massive destruction of livelihood and infrastructure is, in my understanding, an opportunity for us (the privileged class) to set up a qualitative education plan for them so that they can be identified as a resource for our society and not a burden.

October 18th, 2010

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