HUM SUB – Pursukoon Karachi

HUM SUB- Engaging public and underprivileged communities

In the past few years the security situation in IET’s areas of intervention specially coastal communities in Karachi has become very bad. Owing to the Operation Cleanup in Lyari by the police and rangers, the so-called mafia has moved to Mauripur and has started their extortion process targeting shop keepers and residents.

As an effort to come up with pragmatic approaches to solution finding for the many problems hindering development in Pakistan, IET planned participated in the Pursukoon Karachi Festival. HUM SUB was an interactive session arranged by IET, aiming to engage festival goers in a dialogue with community members Azam Khan, Bashir Ahmed and Allah Rakhi.

The session opened with CEO, Shahid Khan focusing on his work and his motivation for focusing on the ultra poor coastal communities, and the reason why there has to be more civil society involvement in such areas. Tazeen Hussain spoke about the need to motivate students to think beyond the curriculum and encourage them to apply their learning to address factors hindering development. Azam Khan, an LSO (Local Support Organization) leader and a football club owner from Gabo Pat shared his story. Bashir Ahmed, an Entrepreneur from Paradise Point spoke about his entrepreneurial ventures and his ancestral work, fishing, and his reasons for turning towards his present means of earning. Allah Rakhi, a woman entrepreneur then told her story of how she was able to transform her life and set an example which shook many stereotypes of women and resulted in a dynamic change which uplifted the whole community. The session closed with Jibran Javed, a journalist speaking about his experiences with the community and how that has contributed to his growth.

As part of our participation in Pursukoon Karachi, IET also organized a Peace Rally by the members of the coastal communities. It took the shape of donkey cart procession, which had been an integral part of the Karachi life and the Seaview Sunday experience in the past but has now disappeared in the wake of development by Cantonment Board Clifton along the Seaview beach. The suggestion of the donkey cart rally came from the community itself. The Peace Rally began from Gulbai through to Tower and I.I. Chundrigar road and ended at the Arts Council. The community set off 1000 white balloons free when they reached the venue.

Acclaimed actor Talat Hussain addresses the Peace Rally by community members affected by violence in Karachi 2013