Internally Displaced People in Pakistan

Updates about IDPs from FATA, Swat, Dir and Buner

Posts Tagged ‘Dir’

New Documents – including UN OCHA’s Situation Report…

Posted by Administrator on June 12, 2009

A number of new documents are now available at the Key Documents page, here. These include,

* June 08, 2009: The Researchers – IDPs Weekly Update

* June 05, 2009: UN OCHA Pakistan Humanitarian Situation Report

* June 04, 2009: UN Fundraising Press Release

* June 03, 2009: ICG Pakistan IDPs Policy Brief June 03, 2009

* May 30: Handicap International’s IDP Vulnerable & Disabled Needs Assessment Report


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Latest UN Update / Situation Report on IDPs (June 02)

Posted by Administrator on June 3, 2009

You can now find the Pakistan Humanitarian Situation Report No. 2 dated 28 May – 1 June 2009 on NWFP IDPs issued by OCHA HQ, here in the Key Documents section.  Please note that the coverage period stated in the Sitrep is incorrect and is in fact from the period 28 May – 1 June 09.

Highlights of the SitRep include… 

June02-UN OCHA SitRep

The next sitrep will be issued on or around 5th June 2009.

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New IDPs Update from The Researchers…

Posted by Administrator on May 28, 2009

New IDP Weekly Update report by The Researchers, available at the Key Documents page, here.

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Latest UN OCHA Situation Report

Posted by Administrator on May 21, 2009

The latest report issued by the Humanitarian Coordinator’s Office / OCHA in Pakistan, on behalf of the UN Humanitarian Country Team. It covers the period from 12 May to 19 May.


  • 2,321,000 IDPs have been registered (as at 19 May) – about 275,000 in camps and 2,046,000 outside camps
  • 26 camps are now in operation in 6 districts
  • Tens of thousands remaining in areas of intense fighting with limited access to food, water and emergency medical care
  • The public launch of the revised Humanitarian Response Plan is scheduled for Friday 22 May in Islamabad.

Find the full report in the Key Documents section, here, as well as an Activity Report issued by Medicins Sans Frontieres (MSF) on its relief activities in Mazdoorabad.

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If you’re in the United States…

Posted by Administrator on May 20, 2009

By texting the word “swat” to the number 20222, anyone can make a $5 donation to the UN High Commissioner’s Office for Refugees for use in the Swat Valley crisis.

You too, can text $5 to the relief effort, as announced by Madam Secretary Clinton at

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NWFP Provincial Government Emergency Response Unit Website

Posted by Administrator on May 19, 2009

The newly established Emergency Response Unit of the Provincial Government of the NWFP is located within the Provincial Relief Commissionerate (whose updates we’ve been uploading in the Key Documents section, here).

The ERU has established a website to serve as a clearinghouse mechanism for IDPs issues at

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NADRA’s Response…

Posted by Administrator on May 17, 2009

In the interest of fairness, I am re-posting NADRA Deputy Chairman, Mr. Tariq Malik’s response to this website’s post on the Rs. 50/ charge being levied on IDPs that are trying to re-establish their particulars in light of their displacement.

“Thanks for pointing out an important issue on your blog. Let me clarify that there is no fee for IDP registration. The people in IDP camps are eligible to get free of cost ID cards. Strict disciplinary action will be taken against NADRA employee who demands for any fee from IDPs. NADRA has deputed a lot of Mobile Registration Vans (MRVs) which are parked and/or moving in the effected registering and delivering ID cards free of cost. The snapshot is misleading as it shows a reciept of NADRAs electronic application called eSahulat which is available in various parts of Pakistan for citizens to verify a citizens credentials as to whether the person is legal citizen of Pakistan or not (to combat Identity fraud). It appears that the friends and relatives of IDP living in other parts of Pakistan are using these machines (not located in IDP camps) helping to verify ID cards of IDPs so that they can get speedy services. IDPs must contact MRVs for free services. We are going to run a public awareness campaign on this issue.”

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Video from the Hathian IDP Camps

Posted by Administrator on May 16, 2009

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Hathian IDP Camps

Posted by Administrator on May 12, 2009

Hathian IDP Camps

On May 12, I accompanied three friends (with significant relief and recovery work experience from the October 2005 earthquake) to the Hathian IDP camps. We were joined by a tribesman from Mohmand, who’s settled in the Punjab, but is fluent with both the area, and the language (Pushto).

Hathian is almost at the foot of the Malakand Division. Its proximity to Malakand means that the less privileged IDPs set up “camp”—due to their lack of resources (both social and fiscal).

To get there, we drove out of Islamabad, up the motorway till we hit Mardan. We then took Malakand Road to Sher Garh, and from there, we hit Hathian. Total driving time was about three and a half hours (3.5). Traffic was not too bad in the afternoon, but as dusk neared it got progressively worse in Mardan.

On May 8th, when the IDPs began to descend upon the area, all of which falls under the Commissioner Mardan, the government announced the closure of schools, and the use of school buildings to shelter the IDPs.

In Hathian, four such schools are under use. The volunteers that have taken charge, and are managing things suggested numbers that ranged from 800 to 1000 families. Our own estimates are around 450 to 600 families.

In total, with average family size between 5.5 and 7, we estimate a total IDP population, in the four school buildings alone, to be anywhere between 2500 to 4200.

The government’s level of support—federal, provincial or district—is limited to the provision of the school building. Volunteers informed us that the Commissioner had announced on the morning of May 12, that all responsibility for the well-being of school property, including furniture, lay with the principals of the schools.

The provincial department for social welfare is leading the registration process, but are almost entirely dependent on the volunteers.

The local government is in disarray, although both the UCs and the district government have put together small ration packages for the affectees.

The access to those packages is controlled by vouchers available from the district government.

Even when affectees get the vouchers (not easy, given total unfamiliarity with the area), voucher-holders have to spend all day standing in line to get the packages.

Bottom-line on government is that food, medicine and education facilities are nowhere to be found.

So who is taking care of these people?

Hathian’s civil society, or as they kept saying, “self-help”. The power and resilience of Pakistan’s community networks have always left me gasping for breath. They did so again in Hathian. Repeated queries about what will happen to the daily wages, or incomes of the volunteers, who seem to be possessed by a spirit of giving, all lead to the same response: “Tomorrow, we could be the ones in need of help!”.

In one school, two doctors are on-call for roughly 20 hours a day in total. Both are under 40, both are volunteers, and neither has any plans of abandoning their new found Swati friends.

The makeup of the IDPs that we met was almost entirely from Swat. Within Swat, a large variety of towns were represented. When we saw teenagers looking on, it was hard not to think that many of Pakistan’s more privileged may have seen these kids years ago, on summer excursions to Kalaam, to Ushu, to Saidu Sharif and to Mingora.

Just because communities work, and society is not completely broken—and indeed, quite robustly intact, doesn’t mean all is well.

Cooked food is a luxury in these camps. So are bedsheets, mattresses, pillows, and soap. Suhaib Kiani, Hassan Sami and Taimur Khan accompanied me to the camp. All four of us, and others will continue to go. Suhaib spent the weekend in Peshawar, getting a sense of what and where the issues were. This camp is probably the tip of the iceberg, and the numbers are most certainly going to increase. Ironically, of all the camps you’ll see on the UN list, this is not one of them. One is desperately hopeful that its the only one. 

More updates as they’re ready.

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2357 hrs (May 12)

Posted by Administrator on May 12, 2009

Final tally on May 11, 2009. The numbers here are for NEW IDPs ONLY. These figures are up to and including May 11, but only refer to IDPs from Malakand Division (Swat, Buner, Dir etc). NO FATA numbers included here.

Source: UN OCHA


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