The water level in Dadu continued to rise on Friday as the overall death toll from the devastating floods, which have affected millions across the country, crossed 1,200.

The increase in water levels in Dadu is a consequence of a surge in the flow of water down the Indus River, with monstrous floods leaving a trail of destruction in the northern regions of the country.

Record monsoon rains and melting glaciers in northern mountains have triggered floods that have killed at least 1,208 people, including 416 children, and injured 6,082, according to the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA).

The latest NDMA report said 19 casualties were reported over the past 24 hours.

The devastation is now spreading southwards, with flood waters gushing towards Manchhar Lake and Johi in Dadu district on Friday, Alam Rahpoto, superintendent engineer at the Sindh Irrigation Department, told Dawn.com.

He said 10,000 to 15,000 cusecs was being discharged from Manchhar Lake into Indus River on Friday morning while 70,000 to 80,000 cusecs of water was flowing into the lake from the Main Nara Valley drain and FP Bund, a flood protective dyke.

“The water level in the lake is rising rapidly but all protective dykes are strong,” the official said.

Meanwhile, he continued, there was a high-level flood in the Indus River in Dadu district. “There is a high-level flood in the river at the Dadu-Moro bridge.”

Separately, Dadu Deputy Commissioner Syed Murtaza Shah told Dawn.com that relief and rescue efforts were under way in the area.

The Pakistan Army, Rangers and district administration are jointly carrying out the relief work, he said, adding the military and the district administration had also launched a rescue operation in kacha (riverine) areas.

On Thursday, Sindh government spokesperson and Karachi Administrator Murtaza Wahab told Reuters that “we’re on a high alert as water arriving downstream from northern flooding is expected to enter the province over the next few days”.

Keeping in view the impending threat, hundreds of families in the province have taken refuge on roads, the only dry land in sight for many. Many are headed for urban centres, like the port city of Karachi, which has for now escaped the flooding.

“We lost our house to the rain and floods, we’re going to Karachi to our relatives. No one has come to help us,” Allah Bakash, 50, told Reuters, who left Dadu on Thursday with his family and belongings loaded on a truck.

‘Residents being sent back home in Charsadda’

As floods ravaged the south, the situation was improving in the country’s north, where water levels were decreasing and the government would now be starting the process of sending people displaced by floods back to their homes,
Special Assistant to the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Chief Minister Barrister Mohammad Ali Saif said on Friday.

In a video statement, he said a high-level meeting was chaired by KP CM Mahmood Khan and it was decided that people would be facilitated in returning to their homes so that the rehabilitation process could be sped up.

“People have been allowed to leave relief camps and arrangements are being made for tents, beds, edibles and health facilities,” he said, adding that the provincial government would also send survey teams to flood-hit areas to assess the extent of the damage and prepare a report.

The CM adviser said damaged roads, bridges, schools and hospitals would be rebuilt.

He said flood-affected residents of the Charsadda district were being housed in relief camps set up at the highway but since the situation had improved, some of them had been shifted to their homes and others to temporary camps established in Charsadda.

“But now, they [residents] have been allowed to leave [the temporary camps] as well,” he added.

Almost 2,000 stranded individuals evacuated: ISPR

The Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said in a statement on Friday that 200 helicopter sorties had been carried out to evacuate stranded people and also transport rations and medicines.

“During [the] last 24 hours, 1,991 stranded individuals have been evacuated and 162.6 tons of relief items have been delivered to flood affected people,” the ISPR said.

“So far, More than 50,000 individuals have been shifted to safer locations from calamity-hit areas,” the statement added.

It went on to say that 147 relief camps were functional round the clock in flood-affected areas of Sindh, Southern Punjab, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

“More than 60,000 patients have been treated and provided 3-5 days’ free medicine so far.”

Turkish delegation arrives in Islamabad

Meanwhile, a delegation led by Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu and Environment Minister Murat Kurum arrived in Islamabad on Friday morning to express solidarity with Pakistan, state-run Radio Pakistan reported.

Climate Change Minister Sherry Rehman received the delegation, she said in a tweet, adding that the Turkish dignitaries had told her that special Friday prayers would be held for Pakistan in their country.

“Such solidarity is rare; they tell us 90,000 mosques in Turkiye will hold special Friday prayers for Pakistan today.”

According to the Radio Pakistan report, Planning Development Minister Ahsan Iqbal also received the delegation at the airport and expressed his gratitude to the leadership and people of Turkiye for extending support to Pakistan.

“We will never forget Turkiye’s spirit of sharing the pain of Pakistani people,” the report quoted him as saying.

The report mentioned that Turkiye was sending relief goods to Pakistan via aircraft and rail.

Later, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif met the delegation and thanked the dignitaries for extending their support to Pakistan.

“I would like to welcome all of you on behalf of the government of Pakistan, the people and myself and thank you for taking out time to visit us in this time of need,” the premier said.

He recalled that on August 27, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had called him and offered condolences for the lives lost during the floods.

“Within no time after my conversation with him, we received tents, medicine, food and other items which are being distributed across Pakistan,” he added.

The prime minister said that members of the Turkish delegation would be given a briefing on the devastation caused by monsoon rains this year.

The recent deluges are said to have submerged a third of the country, with Climate Change Minister Sherry Reh­man saying that “mon­ster” monsoon floods have washed away 45 per cent of the country’s cropland, mai­nly in Sindh and caused around $10 billion in damages on the whole.

The number of flood-affected districts across the country now stands at 110, including 34 in Balochistan, 33 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 16 in Sindh and the rest in Punjab, Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Kashmir.

The government has appealed for international assistance, and the United Nations recent issue a $160 million flash appeal to help the country cope with catastrophic floods.

Earlier on Thursday, Pakistan received 15 million pounds from the United Kingdom and 10 million Danish Krone from Denmark. France also pledged an “extraordinary operation” to provide emergency relief to Pakistanis shattered by floods.


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