A young man from Karachi was hailed as a hero on social media by users across Pakistan after a video went viral that showed him saving the lives of a stray cat and a kitten during the recent spell of rain in Karachi. Urban flooding in the city over the past week has disrupted everyday life, taken dozens of civilian lives, and destroyed thousands of homes in the metropolis, besides causing billions of rupees worth of damage to businesses.
In the video, the young man, who is yet to be identified, can be seen wading through knee-deep water on a submerged road to get to a black Honda car where the stray cat and the kitten are perched, rather awkwardly trying to look for ways to escape. The man carefully and safely gathers the stray cat and the kitten into his arms before carrying them over the submerged road to a relatively dry area.
“This man is a true hero for saving the life of two stray cats during rain,” said Mona Farooq Ahmed, a Twitter user from Pakistan. “There is a reward for kindness to every living thing,” she added, quoting the Holy Prophet (PBUH). “Good men still exist,” another user quipped, taking a light-hearted jab at the opposite sex. “Thank you for sharing. Heartwarming. May God bless him abundantly,” said Meera Malik, an educational leader from Pakistan.
"There is reward for kindess to every living thing".
The Holy Prophet Muhammad (SA)
— Mona Farooq Ahmad (@MFChaudhryy) August 29, 2020
Power returns to some areas, residents breath sigh of relief
More than three days after the devastation caused by the rains, residents of Karachi were accorded some relief after electric power returned to some areas of the metropolis that had been without power for more than seventy-two hours. During the power breakdown and flash flooding, social media had been flooded with posts attacking the city, provincial and federal governments for failing the city.
Some Twitter users, visibly frustrated at the lack of government action after the flooding, took to calling out people who were pointing out the heroic efforts of several people from the city, including the young man who saved the kitten and the cat. “Sick of this resilience crap. This disaster was as much man-made as it is natural. 1000 mafias actually run this city. You’re all guilty,” senior journalist Zarrar Khuhro said on Saturday.
Sick of this resilience crap. This disaster was as much man-made as it is natural. From Sindh govt to DHA's to admittedly neitered local bodies and the 100 competing, unaccountable agencies 'running' this city and the 1000 mafgias that ACTUALLY run this city. You're all guilty.
— Zarrar Khuhro (@ZarrarKhuhro) August 29, 2020
However, the anger had subsided somewhat as power was restored and some of the water on the roads receded. This allowed humane stories from the disaster to gather some traction on social media. Apart from the young man, several others were among those praised for playing their little part in keeping empathy and kindness alive amid hunger, homelessness and devastation all around.
‘Karachi must be saved from drowning’
On Friday, Sindh Governor Imran Ismail also reassured the citizens that the federal government is devising a comprehensive strategy to improve the situation of the drowning city on priority. He added that PM Khan, after consulting his cabinet members, would soon formally announce the necessary steps to resolve the issues of Karachi.
The governor, who is appointed by the federal government, said there was an urgent need to remove encroachments and illegal dwellings on riverbeds, which is creating issues for the entire city. “It is unfortunate that every issue of Karachi is politicised and no one ever seriously addressed the problems that aggravate the difficulties of the country’s economic hu,” he said.
‘Record shattering monsoon’
According to the meteorological department, downpours in August have shattered 89-year-old records for the city. Official statistics said hundreds have been killed since the ongoing spell struck the city on August 6.
Footage aired on the local broadcaster Dunya News showed armed forces personnel and civilian rescue agency workers using rubber boats to rescue the stranded people in the northern and western districts of the port city, which according to Meteorological Department, has received 120% more rains in August compared to the last year.