November 18, 2019

MEMORANDUM poorer. There is a huge gap between the

MEMORANDUM
Climate Change: Pakistan’s poverty index
To: Prime Minister, Pakistan
From: Samra Batool
Subject: Poverty in Pakistan
Date: 12th January 2018.

(1)
Summary:

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Corruption and poverty are two major
issues that completely drowns a country. Unfortunately, Pakistan is facing both
of these social issues together. As a nation, our only focus is on corruption,
but we often forget about thousands of children who are unable to receive
quality education due to poverty.
Poverty not only affects economic but causes a change in political and social
elements as well.
Economic aspects of poverty focus on material
needs, which includes the necessities of daily living, for instance, take food,
clothing, shelter and drinking clean water.
Pakistan’s economy has been on the downhill
for a very long time now and it can be deduced from the fact, that the rich
keeps getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. There is a huge gap
between the upper class and the lower class, and it largely affects our country
internationally as well as on national level. Poverty is affecting not just
thousands of children but also every middle class person, who has to pay a huge
amount of tax almost every day.
In order to improve the living standards of our country, we need to take every
possible step that we can to reduce poverty. 

2) BACKGROUND:

Poverty really is a curse, it is continuously rising all over the world.
In World Bank’s latest reports ‘global poverty ratio’ is rising and Pakistan is
one of the the countries that fell victim. Pakistan is counted among the 43
countries that have the highest poverty risks. Pakistan’s new poverty index
reveals that 4 out of 10 Pakistanis live in multidimensional poverty, according
to the reports nearly 39% people in Pakistan live their lives in poverty. Fata
and Baluchistan have the highest rates of poverty. According to reports the
poverty rate in Pakistan decreased from 55 percent to 39 percent in 2004 to
2015, but the progress across different region in Pakistan is not same.
Poverty in urban areas is about 9.3
percent while in rural areas it is 54.7 percent, you see there’s a huge difference.

In FATA, according to recent reports, 2/3 people (which is about 73 percent)
and in Balochistan 71 percent live in multidimensional poverty. Poverty rate in
Khyber
Pakhtunkhwa is 49%, In Gilgit-Baltistan and Sindh it is 43%, Punjab 31%, while
in Azad Jammu and Kashmir the poverty rate is 25%.

Issues:

Pakistan’s
first-ever official report on multidimensional poverty stated that four out of
10 Pakistanis are currently living under terms of acute poverty. The population
of Balochistan having it the worst.

People are
living in states that are completely devoid of healthcare, clean drinking
water, safe and hygienic food and education. Most citizens do not have any
means of access to such facilities and some are not even aware of them being
around in the first place. Makeshift camps on the outskirts of dense cities and
even inside them are populated by gypsies living a life below the standard of
living. The statistic that the report gives us states that 38.8% of Pakistan’s
population lives in poverty.

While most
provinces suffer from deprivation of basic facilities, others such as Sindh are
even in more of a decline due to lack of education and health facilities.
People have no means to shelter themselves or fight against the forces of
nature. A sluggish pace of developing these areas has been observed and the
government seems like it’s in no rush to see it through; seeing as how bigger
projects occupy their interest and attention. With the temperatures getting
harsher each passing year and no means of dealing with incidents of flooding
effectively; more and more people are forced to leave their already poor living
conditions and start anew leaving behind everything of the bare minimum assets
they already had.

“The MPI
findings show 60.6% of Pakistan’s population does not have access to cooking fuel,
48.5% do not complete schooling, almost four out of every 10 people (39%) do
not have any assets and over 38% of the population lives in a one-room shelter.
About one-third population does not have access to health facilities.” The
Tribune Article, published June 21st, 2016.

 

Recommendations:

For most
cases it can be observed that education plays a major rule in uplifting living
standards but we must start from the basics first. People need healthcare
facilities set up and fresh water filtration plants. After having those come
first, more occupations and jobs need to be opened up. The quotas be maximized
to accommodate more people from rural areas and those from areas with below-par
living conditions.

1)      It can be observed that
those of the poor who do hold jobs work on daily wage bases and are paid in
minimum wage. This needs to be raised and more stable means of work should be
offered.

2)      Affordable or free
healthcare facilities or medical camps be opened up near these areas to treat
their sick and also to raise awareness about living conditions so precautions
can be taken to avoid outbreak and spread of diseases.

3)      Areas be cleaned and
decontaminated of all pollution so that standards are raised geographically.

4)      Free and high-quality
child care institutions be set up and awareness be raised among the masses to
send their children to school.

5)      Vocational Training
institutes need to opened to teach people technical skills with which they can
earn a livelihood from. Technologies such as RAC, sewing, textile and construction.

6)      Surveys be done to poverty
stricken areas on a regular basis and their development and progress be kept
track of.

7)      A body should be appointed
to maintain the upkeep of such areas and proper funds be allocated to them
which they can dispense according to necessity and circumstances.

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