Internally Displaced People in Pakistan

Updates about IDPs from FATA, Swat, Dir and Buner

Posts Tagged ‘Mardan’

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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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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New Updates Uploaded…

Posted by Administrator on May 18, 2009

May 18, The Researchers, an Islamabad-based group has produced a comprehensive update on IDPs, IDP numbers, camps information and who to contact to provide support. You can download the document, from the Key Documents (here) section.

May 18, Al-Khidmat Foundation has also produced a report update on the IDPs situation and what they are doing to support the IDPs. The report can be downloaded from the Key Documents section, here.

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Video from the Hathian IDP Camps

Posted by Administrator on May 16, 2009

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Hathian IDPs (Pictures)

Posted by Administrator on May 13, 2009

Some pictures from the visit on May 12, 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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Consolidated List of the IDP Camps

Posted by Administrator on May 12, 2009

Source: UN OCHA

Established Camps:

  1. Katch Garhi
  2. Jalozai – I
  3. Jalozai – II
  4. Yar Hussain – Swabi
  5. Shaikh Shehzad – Mardan
  6. Jalala – Takhtbai/ Mardan

Established Off-camps Humanitarian Hubs: 

  1. Haji Camp, Peshawar (Near General Bus stand, Peshawar)
  2. Nowshera (Near Social Welfare office, Nowshera)
  3. Charsadda (Mushtarika Flour Mills, Rajjar by-pass road, Charsadda)
  4. Mardan – I (Duranabad, Baghdada Road, Mardan)
  5. Mardan – II (Sange Marmar, Mardan-Swabi Road, Mardan)
  6. Mardan – III (Katlang Road, Mardan)
  7. Swabi – I (Khunda More, Near Motorway Interchange)
  8. Swabi – II (Aurangabad, Swabi-Mardan road, Swabi)
  9. Swabi – III (Naway Kalay, Near Haider CNG, Crl Gul Sher Khan Kalay, (Shaway Adda), Swabi Road, Mardan
  10. Malakand (Civil Secretariat, Batkhela, Malakand)
  11. Bajaur (Political Agent (P.A.) Colony, Khar Bajaur
  12. Kohat (Near Malik Fuel station, Bannu Road, Kohat)

Expected Off-camps Humanitarian Hubs:

  1. Takhtbai (Hujra/election office Sher Afghan Khan, Mardan Road, Takhtbai)
  2. Khairabad / Rustam (Govt. High School, Khairabad)
  3. Mardan – IV (Hoti Flour Mills, Mardan)

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2245 hrs (May 12)

Posted by Administrator on May 12, 2009

Action Aid’s count is 360,000 as of May 12, 2009. They expect it to swell to 800,000.

From Reliefweb (

Pakistan fighting could swell camp population to 800,000

Pakistan needs international help to cope with the hundreds of thousands of people who are fleeing the fighting between government and Taliban forces in northwest Pakistan, ActionAid said today.

Fikre Zewdie, director of ActionAid Pakistan said: “More than 800,000 people could soon be living in camps or waiting for places in them. People urgently need food, water, shelter, sanitation and health care. The fighting could continue for a longer period, so they will not be going home soon. Pakistan cannot handle a crisis on this scale without international help.”

ActionAid staff are now in the field assessing the situation so that ActionAid can respond appropriately and effectively to help those in need.

The exodus began when government forces began operations against the Taliban in Swat and neighbouring districts last week. The temporary lifting of a curfew on Sunday 10 May allowed many more people to leave.

About 360,000 displaced people have now registered with the authorities, in camps or other locations, in Swabi, Mardan, Charsadda and Kohat districts. But many more are waiting to register or still on the move. Authorities in Mardan estimate that altogether 600,000 to 800,000 people have been displaced by the latest fighting.

The majority are expected to find rented accommodation or stay with relatives. But accommodation in the towns is becoming scarce. Aid agencies estimate that 300,000 will come to the camps, where 560,000 are already living because of earlier fighting in tribal areas. This could swell the camp population to more than 800,000.

People are queuing in very hot weather for tents or shelters, often fruitlessly. Water, medicine and sanitation facilities are very scarce and people are becoming increasingly agitated. The registration process requires identity documents, but some people left home too hurriedly to bring these with them and many, particularly women, do not have ID cards in the first place.


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