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Earthquake appeal from Pakistani comrades - update and ’how to donate’ details added 11 October

Tuesday 11 October 2005

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No doubt everyone will be aware of the earthquake which has struck areas of Northern Pakistan and India. We have received messages from Farooq Tariq on behalf of the Labour Party Pakistan and Khalid Mahmood of the Labour Education Foundation, a social organisation which has already organised aid to Afghanistan.

The LPP, in conjunction with the Foundation, has taken the initiative in setting up the Labour Relief Campaign for Earthquake Victims in Pakistan (LRCEVP).

LPP supporters with one of their aid trucks

This initiative is also supported by the Women Workers Help Line and the National Trade Union Federation. Relief camp sites are being set up in Lahore, Karachi, Hyderabad, Islamabad and Murdan.

The LRCEVP is collecting money, medicines, blankets and food. LPP members will be going to the worst hit areas to set up relief committees.

Many have been directly affected by the earthquake. The home village of LPP chairperson Nisar Shah has been virtually destroyed and the party’s vice chairperson Naheed Effendi, has lost members of her family.

Update from Pakistan by Farooq Tariq 11 October

There are some areas in Northern areas which has not yet been approached by any aid agencies so for even after three days of the worst ever earth Quack in Pakistan.

Naheed Effendi, vice chairperson of Labour Party Pakistan told me this morning that her brother has come back from Balakot effected area after he became very sick. He told her that we buried eight bodies in one grave. The whole area of Balakot and surrounding villages are stinking as bodies are in the open and no one is there to claim them. Naheed has lost most of her maternal uncles and their families in this earthquake.

Nisar Shah has reported from Rawalkot (Kashmir) that finally some aid has arrived but too late and too little. He is helping the victims in the area. He too has lost several relatives.

Today, the Labour Relief Camp organized at Lahore has collected a total of some half a million rupees (US $8000) in cash and in the shape of goods. 150,000 cash helped us to buy the very needy tents for those sleeping in the open for the third night. We have sent the first truck fully loaded by medicines, food, blankets and tents. We have also send over 100 milk feeders for the babies and cloth for 100 bodies to bury.

The response was massive by the passers-by. We were able to have our camp at a prime space on busiest Regal Chouck of Lahore. We have a loudspeaker appealing to people for donations. Then some of us with boxes in our hands will go to every car, motorcycle, bus and cycles for donation. Even police officers, intelligence agencies people donated to us in hundreds.

A woman will come by to drop Rupees 2000 ($33) and the other will give us Rupees 5. So was the case of donations. We raised over 150,000 Rupees in cash that was not matched by any other group on the same road including the fundamentalist.

Over 40 of us were involved in fund raising campaign. Such was the enthusiasm that two comrades helped to open the camp for the whole night. Today three comrades have gone to Kashmir for few days to help the victims.

We plan to send the next truck tomorrow. Please indicate if you can donate any amount. We need it now.

How to donate money

A/C No. 01801876

Please advise and pay to Citi Bank, New York, USA Swift CITI US 33 for onward transfer to BANK ALFALAH LTD., KARACHI, PAKISTAN A/C No. 36087144 and for final transfer to BANK ALFALAH LTD., LDA PLAZA, KASHMIR ROAD, LAHORE,

Medicines and food can be sent to:

Labour Education Foundation, Sufi Mansion, 7 Egerton Road,
Lahore, Pakistan.

Tel: 0092 42 6303808, Fax: 0092 04206271149

Labour Party Pakistan, 40 Abbot Road, Lahore, Pakistan
Tel: 92 42 6315162
Email: labourparty@gmx.net