Spearheaded by lawyer Faria Ali, the event was attended by professionals from various fields
LONDON: A group of British Pakistani professionals working in London have raised over £200,000 to help victims of the recent floods in Pakistan.
The event at an east London restaurant was attended by over 250 professionals including lawyers, judges, accountants, and businessmen, who donated for the charitable cause.
The initiative was spearheaded by lawyer Faria Ali who brought together international law and accountancy firms from London to raise the amount.
Parliamentarians in attendance from the Labour and Conservative parties included Nusrat Ghani, Afzal Khan, Yasmin Qureshi, Naz Shah, and Rushanara Ali. Circuit Judge Amjad Nawaz, Circuit Judge Azmat Nisa, Deputy Senior District Judge Tan Ikram, and others, who stressed the need for participation in flood relief efforts.
The participants also heard first-hand accounts from Tufail Hussain, the UK Director of Islamic Relief, and Sky News journalist Saima Mohsin, who were in Sindh recently to report on the destruction.
"I'm very grateful to all of the firms and individuals that have rallied around to raise funds for those affected by the floods in Pakistan. To date, £200,000 has been raised and we're hoping to push on with this in the coming weeks and months to support longer term recovery efforts. We are also exploring ways in which we can support the implementation of sustainable, preventative changes to prevent loss of lives and livelihoods going forwards," commented Faria, the organiser of the event.
Faria said that the money will be spent in Pakistan through partner charities of the Disaster Emergency Committee (DEC).
Saima and Tufail told the audience that they were shocked to see Sindh submerged with whole towns and cities disappearing under the water.
"What I saw in Sindh was unimaginable and I have never seen anything like this. There was water everywhere. What used to be settled communities of people were turned into a sea of water. We saw water all over and millions of people in a completely helpless situation," Saima said.
Naz Shah MP, Yasmeen Qureshi MP and Afzal Khan MP also spoke to the audience and stressed the need for an increase in aid for Pakistan from the UK government.