Heatwave kills 450 people in Karachi region in four days: NGO

Wednesday 03rd July 2024 07:17 EDT

Karachi: A searing heat wave has hit Karachi, Pakistan’s biggest city, that led to the death of at least 450 people over the last four days, a leading NGO claimed. The Edhi Foundation said it received at least 427 bodies in the last four days.

Karachi has been hit by extreme hot weather with soaring mercury crossing 40 degrees, temperatures that are too high for a coastal area. “We have four mortuaries operating in Karachi and we have reached a stage where there is no more space to keep more bodies in our mortuaries,” Faisal Edhi, who heads the Foundation, said.

Edhi Trust is the largest welfare foundation in Pakistan and provides various free or subsidised services to the poor, homeless, orphan street children, discarded babies and battered women. “The sad fact is that many of these bodies have come from areas where a lot of load shedding is going on even in this harshest weather,” he said.

Edhi said most of the bodies belonged to homeless people and drug addicts on the streets. “The extreme heat wave got them as these people spend their entire day out in the open searching for fixes,” he said.

He said on Tuesday itself they had received 135 bodies at their morgues and 128 on Monday.
Karachites also have to brave long hours of load shedding in many areas with the electricity supplier, Karachi Electric, now claiming it has to resort to power cuts because the Sindh government still has to clear dues of Rs 10 billion.
The cosmopolitan city, which is also the financial capital of Pakistan, is home to millions of migrants from other parts of the country and also from Afghanistan and some African countries and this includes hundreds of thousands of drug addicts who live on the streets.

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