Published On: Thu, Nov 19th, 2015

A bleak future


Shaista Jalil
THATTA, SINDH: District Thatta of Sindh, which lies on the edges of Arabian Sea, and where Indus meets the sea, is suffering from sand erosion because of sea rise – an affect of the changing climate. Once prosperous, the dwellers are now faced with extreme poverty, and have been forced to migrate.

Sajan Waari has a tradition of early marriage

Sajan Waari has a tradition of early marriage

Marvi, a resident of Sajan Waari village near the coastal town of Keti Bander, says due to abrupt intrusion of seawater, her house has been destroyed.

“Now the fish catch is also less but we are killing time,” she tells The Nature News, adding her family depends on whatever little earning her husband has.

Adding insult to injury, the village is also deprived of an access to healthcare, energy and sanitation.

“There is no hospital in the area. Pregnant women face extreme difficulties,” informs Maria. “At least six women died due to complications during labour in the last two years.”

Most of the people migrating to other areas are watermen

Most of the people migrating to other areas are watermen

Sajan Waari has a tradition of early marriage. 18-year-old Rubina, who is from Tando Adam, was 12 and had just passed Grade III when she got married. She now has two children. Her husband is a fisherman but despite not making enough for a better living, she’s adamant to stay in the village.

“We don’t have the resources to move. We have nowhere to go,” she says.

Ghulam Rasool Khatri, a spokesperson of the World Wide Fund for Nature-Pakistan says “sea rise has affected the livelihoods of the people, as well as deprived them of potable water. The brackish water has destroyed lands, and made the marine life move to distant waters.”

Most of the people migrating to other areas are watermen, as fish catch in the sea has been drastically reduced. The future of the coastal communities remains uncertain.

This article has been published in arrangement with NCEJ as part of its training in Thatta on “Reporting impacts of climate change on communities”

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