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Relentless rains kill 23 in Sindh, Balochistan

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  • Flow of traffic remains suspended on interprovincial highways; power supply and mobile networks cut off 
  • PMD forecasts more heavy rains in Sindh and Balochistan over next 48 hours.
  • PM Shehbaz directs NDMA and PDMA to pace up relief operations in affected areas at the earliest.

The incessant torrential rains pounding Sindh with flash flooding in Dera Ghazi Khan, Balochistan’s Lasbela and adjoining areas killed another 23 and left scores of people injured and hundreds displaced on Thursday, while traffic remained suspended across interprovincial highways, The News reported.

The heavy rains in most parts of Sindh, including Thatta, Dadu, Khairpur Nathan Shah, Sukkur, Jacobabad, Larkana, and Hyderabad paralysed communication systems, prompting Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to direct the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) to expedite relief and rehabilitation activities in the flood-affected areas of southern Sindh.

In a provincial breakup of the rising death toll, as many as 14 people died as a result of rain-related accidents in Khairpur and Qambher, six persons including four children died in different parts of DG Khan and three died as a result of flash-flooding in Balochistan’s Lasbela district and adjoining areas.

Meanwhile, hundreds of people were left stranded without tents under the open sky by the torrential rains following the large-scale destruction of their mud houses while the incessant heavy rains paralysed Thatta, Dadu, Khairpur Nathan Shah, Sukkur, Jacobabad, Larkana, Hyderabad and other.

The constant downpour prevented the respective city administrations to resume their relief and rehabilitation service. Fuel shortages were also reported hampering the drainage of stranded rainwater as many villagers remained marooned in the water and needed rescue. The failure to drain water from the marooned villages has raised the spectre of infections and diseases.

Exceptionally strong flash flooding in Koh-e-Suleman range displaced 0.7 million population of DG Khan, besides killing six people. As many as thousands of families were stranded after 200 small, large villages were badly hit in the rain. The flash flooding also suspended traffic between Dera Ghazi Khan and Quetta, Balochistan and Punjab and also between Peshawar and Karachi on the Indus Highway

The power supply and cell phone networks remain suspended in flood-hit areas. In a related development, heavy rains caused flash flooding in the Lasbela district and adjoining areas. With three more deaths in, the death toll in Balochistan rose to 205, while 81 suffered injuries according to the Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA). The situation in other districts has not improved yet as Musakhail, Zhob, Pishin, Qila Saifullah, Qila Abdullah, Nasirabad and Lasbela were still receiving torrential rains for the past two days.

According to officials, hundreds of mud houses were damaged in Qila Saifullah, Muslim Bagh, Musakhail, Kohlu, Dera Bugti and other areas due to incessant rains. A total of 18 bridges and 690 km of roads have been damaged amid the rains. PDMA and rescue authorities are carrying out operations in flood-affected areas. Traffic on Quetta-Karachi National Highway remained suspended even after five days as flood water is still flowing over the highway.

The Pakistan Metrological Department (PMD) has forecast more heavy rains in Sindh and Balochistan in the next 48 hours with urban flooding and flash flooding across hill torrents in KP, South Punjab and Balochistan.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif directed the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) to carry out relief and rehabilitation activities in the flood-affected areas of southern Sindh.

Expressing deep sorrow over the loss of life and property caused by the monsoon rains, the prime minister directed the NDMA and PDMA to pace up relief operations in the affected areas at the earliest. The PM stressed ensuring the rescue of the people on a priority basis and instructed them to provide financial assistance of Rs 50,000 to each family.

He emphasised an immediate supply of food and clean water to the victims besides ensuring them facilities of accommodation and medicines. The prime minister also instructed the authorities to be vigilant in the wake of potential flooding besides taking necessary measures.

According to Inter-services Public Relations, the Pakistan Army troops remained busy in relief activities in Dera Ghazi Khan, Rajanpur, Naseerabad and Lasbela. The army medical teams were providing medical care to the affected people.

Meanwhile, the United States announced a $1 million grant in support of Pakistan’s efforts to address floods and other natural disasters that have caused heavy loss of life and property across the country.

In a tweet, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said, “We stand by Pakistan in hard times and offer our support to flood victims. In addition to $100,000 in immediate relief, the US announced $1 million to build resilience against natural disasters, and we continue to work together to mitigate future impacts of the climate crisis.

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Latest News

The captain of the Pakistan Shaheens’ white-ball team has been announced for the upcoming trip to Darwin.

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Mohammad Haris, a wicket-keeper batsman, has been chosen as the captain of Pakistan Shaheens for the two 50-over matches and nine-team Top End T20 series in Darwin, Australia. The matches will take place from 4-18 August.

Haris recently led Pakistan Shaheens in the ACC Men’s Emerging Teams Asia Cup 2023 in Colombo. In this tournament, Pakistan successfully defended their championship by defeating India with a margin of 128 runs.

The Pakistan Shaheens have already arrived in Darwin to play two four-day matches against Bangladesh ‘A’ on July 19-22 and July 26-29. Sahibzada Farhan is currently captaining the team in the longer format of the game.

Following the two four-day matches, the Shaheens will engage in 50-over matches against Northern Territory (NT) and Bangladesh ‘A’ on 4 and 6 August, respectively, prior to the start of the T20 series on 9 August.

The T20 competition includes additional teams such as ACT Comets, Bangladesh ‘A’, Melbourne Renegades, Melbourne Stars, Perth Scorchers, Northern Territory Strike, Adelaide Strikers, and Tasmania.

In addition, seven modifications have been implemented for the white-ball contests compared to the red-ball side.

Abdul Faseeh, Arafat Minhas, Arif Yaqoob, Jahandad Khan, Mohammad Haris, Mohammad Imran Jnr, and Usman Khan are the replacements for Kamran Ghulam, Khurram Shahzad, Mehran Mumtaz, Mohammad Ali, Mubasir Khan, Tayyab Tahir, and Umar Amin.

The Pakistan Shaheens will participate in the Darwin series for the second consecutive year. In the previous year, NT Strike emerged victorious over Shaheens in the final of the Top End T20 Series with a margin of 46 runs. Subsequently, Pakistan Shaheens achieved a resounding victory over PNG by 224 runs and Northern Strike by 84 runs in the two One-day matches.

The white-ball squad of Pakistan Shaheens
Mohammad Haris is the captain of the team, and the other players in the squad are Abdul Faseeh, Arafat Minhas, Arif Yaqoob, Faisal Akram, Haseebullah (who is both a wicketkeeper and a batter), Muhammad Irfan Khan, Jahandad Khan, Kashif Ali, Mohammad Huraira, Mohammad Imran Jnr, Omair bin Yousuf, Sahibzada Farhan, Shahnawaz Dahani, and Usman Khan.

The personnel providing support to the players include Abdul Rehman as the head coach, Mohammad Masroor as the assistant coach-cum-manager, Mohammad Asad as the physiotherapist, Imranullah as the trainer, and Usman Hashmi as the analyst.

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Latest News

Explanation: The increase in inflation in the United States would cause electricity costs in Pakistan to rise.

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Electricity contracts between Independent Power Plants (IPPs) and the federal government not only involve capacity costs, but also have a significant impact on the economy and the financial well-being of the population. These contracts are closely linked to the inflation rate and the value of the US dollar.

Startling disclosures have emerged regarding the exorbitant electricity tariffs in Pakistan. The Council of Economic and Energy Journalists Sage, representing the institute, provided a briefing to leading journalists in Karachi.

According to the information provided, the electricity rate component in Pakistan experienced a 253 percent increase from 2019 to 2024 as a result of inflation in America.

The data presented in the briefing indicates that the capacity charges in Pakistan were Rs3.26 per unit in 2019 and climbed to Rs10.34 per unit in 2024.

The capacity charges imposed on the public incorporate the effects of both US inflation and domestic inflation.

Due to the rise in the country’s interest rate, the interest payment for energy has climbed by 343% during a span of four years. Over the course of four years, the working capital of IPPs caused a 716 percent increase in the cost of power per unit.

The electricity rate has increased by 12 to 20 percent, with 70 percent of the charges being capacity charges.

SDPI experts recommended the government to adopt a centralised tariff policy rather than a universal electricity tariff strategy.

The power generation capacity amounts to 23,000 megawatts.

As a result of the increase in solar power generation in the country, the capacity charges will have an additional adverse impact on the residents.

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Business

Significant surge in the price of gold in Pakistan

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On Friday, the price of gold in Pakistan continued to increase.

According to the All-Pakistan Gems and Jewellers Sarafa Association, the price of 24-karat gold per tola has risen by Rs2,200, reaching Rs249,000.

The price of 10-gram 24-karat gold increased by Rs1,886, reaching a total of Rs213,477. On Thursday, the cost of 10 grammes of 22-karat gold was Rs195,687.

The global gold market likewise had a rising trajectory. As per APGJSA, the worldwide rate was $2,404 per ounce, showing a decline of $24 during the course of the trading day.

The local market witnessed constant silver prices at Rs2,900 per tola.

Market observers attribute the increase in gold prices to other variables, such as volatility in the global market, currency exchange rates, and economic conditions. The ongoing surge in gold prices is likely to impact investment choices and consumer behaviour in the near future.

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