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An Ethnographic Study of 2010 Flood Affected People: “The Case of Kot-Addu village in Southern Punjab of Pakistan”
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Cultural Anthropology and Ethnology, Cultural Anthropology.
2014 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 30 credits / 45 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

In 2010, Pakistan’s majority of the rural population witnessed the major flash flood, which not only destroyed the infrastructure, but also led to human causalities and affected severely the entire social fabric of society. The present research is about the experiences of facing the havocs of flood by vulnerable rural people of Kot Addu, a small town located within an already underdeveloped region of Pakistan. The flood occurred due to heavy rains in the monsoon season that is the chief rainfall system in South Asia. Generally, the region is already underdeveloped and majority of the inhabitants of Kot Addu had very limited access to social, economic, and other material resources, however, flood brought havocs and exacerbated their vulnerabilities. Further, Due to cut from mainstream media news about flood of high magnitude and also because institutional neglect of State Administration, the poor villagers had to bear the excruciating damages both in terms of material and non-material things. Although every year people face small floods, called “chull” in the local language, this time they faced the biggest flood in the history of Pakistan. In addition, the inhabitants of region had to face the human casualties, because the rescue and relief activity by concerned authorities were not started timely. The study find out that the people of Kot Addu predominantly dependent on agriculture and livestock, had to face the disastrous conditions after the flooding had spoiled their standing crops, stored food grains, and livestock. Such losses exacerbated the sufferings of flood affected people manifold but such sufferings seemed to have lessened after the next crops. Nevertheless, the 2010 floods in Pakistan revealed a history and myriad of crisis and uncertainty. The State that was still handling the hazards of the 2005 earthquake now had to face another catastrophe. In Pakistan, issues of governance and administration have never been considered as based on non-delivering of services to citizens. Similarly, the absence of political consensus on building mega dams for water storage resulted into people facing of the worst water-caused destruction ever witnessed in sixty years of the country’s history. The present research stresses the need to look into immorality and inequality as a means to address post-disaster phenomena in affected societies. In addition, the study helps in understanding about how the life of already marginalized and vulnerable people becoming more vulnerable due to catastrophes, mismanagement of hazards and institutional neglect. The Government had not taken any measures to control even the small-scale floods in these areas that occur frequently. The supposed inefficient and morally corrupted political system was another reason behind not taking any efficient measures since the politicians focused more on protecting their own land and people in flood zones than on managing the risk hazards. The flood affectees pointed to the negligence of the Government and the different state departments for not warning people in time, for ineffective evacuation procedures and for the mismanagement in mitigation of flood hazards. Nevertheless, the flood affectees seemed much pleased with the activities of non-governmental international and national aid agencies especially in post flood period.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. , 104 p.
Keyword [en]
Disaster, Chull, Government, Vulnerability, Indus, Kot Addu, Structural Inequality, Development Anthropology
National Category
Social Anthropology
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-230210OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-230210DiVA: diva2:739246
Educational program
Masters in Humanities, Cultural Anthropology
Available from: 2014-08-20 Created: 2014-08-20 Last updated: 2014-10-07Bibliographically approved

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