DAWN.COM reports on the Gwadar disaster in Pakistan

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Weather experts have issued a warning that a new rain system is expected to hit Balochistan in the coming days, adding to the damage caused by recent heavy rains. Thousands of people in Gwadar and surrounding areas were left homeless as the downpour destroyed their homes. Streets, roads, and highways were flooded, and residents worked tirelessly to remove water from their properties. Many lost what little they had, causing widespread despair throughout the community.

While governmental agencies are responding to the crisis, it will take a significant amount of time and effort to rebuild lives. Questions arise about Gwadar’s ability to fulfill its role as the centerpiece of a development corridor that could transform Balochistan and the entire country. With its small population, it’s hard to see how the town can support large-scale regional development to bring prosperity, especially through CPEC.

The current infrastructure in Gwadar is ill-equipped to handle the effects of heavy rainfall, which may become more frequent as climate patterns shift. The lack of a proper drainage system and water storage capacity exacerbates the situation. Development plans like the Gwadar Smart City initiative must prioritize the well-being of existing communities, upgrade essential infrastructure, and improve livelihood opportunities to truly benefit the residents.

Residents of Gwadar feel removed from decision-making processes that affect their lives, leading to widespread discontent. A collaborative approach involving local representatives, elders, and government officials is needed to address the challenges faced by the community. Dialogue, inclusion, and trust-building are essential for promoting peace and unity in the region.

By involving all stakeholders in the planning and implementation of relief and rehabilitation efforts, the government can foster a sense of ownership among the local population. Amnesty for dissenters, political dialogue, and a transparent decision-making process are crucial steps towards rebuilding trust and cooperation. Only through inclusivity and open communication can Gwadar and its residents truly prosper.

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