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Drought in Balochistan affects 1.9 million people and 3.4 million livestock

, / 4 weeks ago
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Balochistan, which sits on the border of Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran is currently experiencing a drought which is affecting under 2 million people and destroying farms.

 

1.9 million people have been impacted by the drought in Balochistan and 3.4 million livestock have also been severely affected.

Balochistan – is an arid desert and mountainous region in south-western Asia. It comprises the Pakistani province of Balochistan, Iranian province of Sistan and Baluchestan, and the southern areas of Afghanistan including Nimruz, Helmand and Kandahar provinces.

Families Are Being Left With No Option But to Leave

48 year old farmer and father, Mubarak Ali has been severely affected by the drought. Before the drought, his province was recognized for achieving record production of vegetables,

Mubarak Ali speaking to an Islamic Relief Officer.

I have 5 acres of land on which I used to grow wheat, cucumber, okra and other vegetables … Those were the good days. Islamic Relief gave off-season farming tunnels in our area, which have been destroyed due to drought.

Most of Mubaraks friends have relocated to Dalbandin, but he finds it difficult to leave his home. The drought has dried up wells and agricultural lands are barren.

The drought in Balochistan has dried up agricultural lands, narrowing means of livelihoods for farmers living in local provinces.

With teary eyes Mubarak said,

“I love my area as I belong from here and I don’t want to migrate. There is no water in our area, not even for drinking. My children and I fetch water from nearby villages. We pray to Allah for rain. With every passing day, it is becoming difficult for us to survive. Even if I migrate, there is no place for me to live. There are no other livelihood opportunities for us. The cattle have died and the remaining will not survive this winter.”

Drought in Balochistan

Water is a scarce resource in Balochistan. The drought has thus resulted in severe shortages of drinking water, food and fodder.

Balochistan is primarily an arid mountainous region where 93% of the area is range land and approximately 21 million hectares is used for grazing. So livestock plays a significant contribution to the household food security needs of the communities.

Food insecurity, malnutrition and hunger is prominent in the drought prevailing areas. Families have sold their livestock or have witnessed their livestock die due to the food and water shortages.

Islamic Relief Response

Islamic Relief, which has been working in the region for nearly a decade, has launched an urgent intervention to repair water facilities and restore livelihoods for those affected.

Islamic Relief campaigns worldwide to protect the planet and its people from the devastating impacts of climate change. Islamic Relief is currently engaged in over 50 climate related relief and adaptation projects in more than 14 countries.

Islamic Relief Australia is currently responding to a series of droughts in Balochistan, Somaliland (Somalia) and in Kenya.

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