Farmers in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa say that the floods have destroyed crops on thousands of acres
he devastation caused by the floods in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has resulted in huge losses to the agriculture and hotel industry.
Heart-wrenching images emerged last week from Khyber Pukhtunkhwa’s Malakand division. Many videos capturing the floodings have been circulating on social media. These show a number of hotels, commercial buildings, mosques and houses being washed away by flood water.
Officials say the government has yet to finalise its estimates of the devastation caused by the floods.
Initial reports have indictaed that 241 houses, 50 hotels , 42 schools, 24 bridges and 136 kilometres of roads have been completely destroyed by the flood. WAPDA officials told The News on Sunday that in Malakand division, 54 electric feeders have been badly damaged. In Mingora city, 150 homes and 50 shops have been affected by the flood.
Farmers say that the recent rains and floods have destroyed crops on thousands of acres.
Wali Khan, a member of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Farmers' Association (Anjuman-i-Kashtkaran) tells The News on Sunday that the flood has destroyed crops and orchards in Charsadda and Nowshehra. He says land boundaries in some areas have been erased. He says a new problem the landowners will face will be “the identification of their lands.”
“The rain and flood have caused a lot of damage in Swat, Charsadda and Nowshera. All our lands have become useless,” he adds.
Some 15 kilometres from Peshawar, Charsadda, Naguman is famous for productive farms and orchards. Mumtaz Khan, a local farmer in the area, says that the rain and flood have destroyed much of the crops in Charsadda and Nowshera. He fears that this might result in a large scale food shortage in Pakistan.
"Crops on millions of acres have been lost. The waters took sugarcane, tobacco, vegetables and many orchards with them,”he says. “The government should focus on rehabilitating the agricultural sector on a priority basis. There could be a food crisis in the country, next."
Mumtaz also says that the government should provide early relief to landowners.
The writer is the president of the Tribal Young Journalists’ Association (TYJA)