Philanthropist gives Rs2m aid for each dead of Paretabad blast tragedy

Published June 16, 2024
GOVERNOR Kamran Khan Tessori hands over a cheque for Rs2m to one of the bereaved families at a ceremony held in Hyderabad on Saturday. Organisers have acknowledge the typographical error in the figure of the amount,  saying it is Rs2,000,000 and not Rs200,000.—Dawn
GOVERNOR Kamran Khan Tessori hands over a cheque for Rs2m to one of the bereaved families at a ceremony held in Hyderabad on Saturday. Organisers have acknowledge the typographical error in the figure of the amount, saying it is Rs2,000,000 and not Rs200,000.—Dawn

HYDERABAD: Heirs of the 27 men, women and children who had lost their lives in the May 30 Paretabad cylinder blast and fire incident were given cheques of Rs2m each at a ceremony organised by JDC Welfare Foundation in a local banquet on Saturday.

The compensation amount, announced by Syed Zafar Abbas Jafri of the JDC a few days after the incident, has been donated by Ali Shaikhani, an overseas Pakistani philanthropist. The cheques were distributed by Governor Kamran Khan Tessori, along with Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan Chairman Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, Ali Shaikhani, Syed Zafar Abbas Jafri and Sailani Welfare Trust chief Bashir Farooqui.

Other MQM-P leaders, including Dr Farooq Sattar, were also present at the programme largely attended by members of the families affected by the tragedy as well as residents of Paretabad.

Speaking at the ceremony, Governor Tessori paid tributes to Ali Shaikhani for his donation, and observed that overseas Pakistanis loved their country, and this donation from Mr Shaikhani proved this. He remarked that the job being done today by overseas Pakistanis should have been done by government.

Cheques distributed by Governor Kamran Tessori; JDC’s Zafar Abbas had played key role in arranging donation

He said that LPG in cylinders was supplied the world over under certain safeguards. A survey or inquiry should be conducted to ascertain as to how such incidents took place and who were responsible for them.

Sailani Welfare Trust chief Bashir Farooqui also appreciated Ali Shaikhani’s generosity. He said standard operating procedures (SOPs) should be introduced to control LPG cylinder blasts. JDC’s Zafar Abbas also spoke at the ceremony.

MQM-P Chairman Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui apologised to the bereaved families for offering his condolences so late. He said he would have come earlier but was engaged in matters relating to a big cause -- establishment of a university in Hyderabad. He regretted that the second biggest city of Sindh could not get a university in the last 75 years.

“Hyderabad mayor doesn’t enjoy even 5pc mandate of the city which is an irony. Hyderabad is still the second largest city if its population is correctly counted,” he said.

Dr Siddiqui said that 97pc taxes were paid by one class while another class consumes the entire tax amount. “This formula is not viable for running a country, what to talk of a province,” he said.

He said he was waiting for the day when it would prove that a system based on infidelity might survive but a system based on injustice could not.

The MQM-P leader said that it appeared that those who had changed the country’s capital from Karachi to Islamabad could only shift “a body as its soul stays back”. “Even today, Karachi along with other urban centres connected to it, is the economic, industrial and ideological capital of the country.

The urban population contributed 97pc of revenues to the country but got nothing in return, he said, and sarcastically remarked: “In fact, cites don’t pay taxes but jaziya [a tax typically levied by conquerors of a territory on its people] is being recovered from their residents”.

Dr Farooq Sattar offered condolence to the bereaved family members and thanked Ali Shaikhani, Zafar Abbas and Bashir Farooqui for helping victims of Paretabad tragedy.

He said government had failed to control price-hike and joblessness. Rulers should end their insensitivity and resolve poor lot’s problems, he added.

He observed that Governor Tessori was working on bringing an end to unemployment by helping youth to become IT experts.

Published in Dawn, June 16th, 2024

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