A cloudburst in Islamabad caused heavy flooding in sector E-11, confirmed Islamabad Deputy Commissioner Muhammed Hamza Shafqat.
“Cloudburst in Islamabad has caused flooding in various areas. Teams are clearing nullahs/roads. Hopefully, we will be able to clear everything in an hour,” the Commissioner tweeted.
Cloudburst in Islamabad has caused flooding in various areas. Teams are clearing nullahs/roads. Hopefully we will be able to clear everything in an hour. Everyone is requested to plz cooperate and restricted unnecessary movement for next 2 hours.
— Office of Deputy Commissioner Islamabad (@dcislamabad) July 28, 2021
Meanwhile, residents of the areas flooded Twitter with videos of the devastation caused by the flash floods. In the videos, several cars can be seen floating away with the water.
According to unofficial reports, a woman and her child died. A wall collapsed over them due to the gushing water. The cloudburst also flooded basements of some houses in Islamabad’s E-11.
Police officials said flooding in sector E-11 was due to the “poor performance of society management” of private housing schemes, adding that there was no equipment available to deal with the situation.
As per sources in Pakistan Meteorological Department, some areas in Islamabad received up to 330mm of rain in the last few hours.
Army teams are currently conducting rescue operations.
Woes of mismanagement
Pakistan is currently facing a severe water crisis. Experts fear that the per capita availability of fresh water in Pakistan will decline to 860 cubic meters by 2025. As a result, the country may reach absolute water scarcity by 2040.
However, on the other hand, Pakistan is also a victim of floods during the monsoon season. Due to unplanned urbanization, some areas are not equipped to deal with heavy rains.
Sheer mismanagement by E11 giving us this result. Second In a water starved country this God given water should have been saved but of course will be wasted due to lack of water harvesting policies. pic.twitter.com/0nM7YGFZhr
— najma minhas (@MinhasNajma) July 28, 2021
As floods take over Islamabad’s sector E-11, netizens are making comparisons between sector E and sector F.
Social media users are of the view that sector E-11 does not have enough open space around nullahs. Furthermore, it does not enough have adequate green belts. Such factors contribute to flooding.
Have a look at the difference in the width of open space around nullahs for flooding in E-11 vs a CDA sector like F-11. E-11 was planned by 4 or 5 different private societies that have maximised plotted area at the expense of nullahs and greenspace pic.twitter.com/8m2D21EhvJ
— Fahad Desmukh (@desmukh) July 28, 2021
Moreover, netizens are accusing private housing schemes of prioritizing profits over sustainable development.
Issues of mismanagement and lack of planning are not exclusive to Islamabad. Different cities of Pakistan also suffer during the monsoon season.
Earlier this month in KPK, over 20 people died when heavy rain or floods caused roofs, walls, or whole buildings to collapse.
Last year, a spell of monsoon also wreaked havoc in Karachi, causing irreparable damage to lives and property.
The government should take initiatives to mitigate the negative consequences of flooding. Due to climate change, irregular weather patterns are expected, however, Pakistan should ensure that relevant measures are taken to ensure that floods do not damage cities.
Read more: Climate Change and Pakistan’s Water Security