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September 02, 2022: National / International Current Affairs
1. 110 districts hit by floods as locals race to save Dadu
• Sindh braced for yet more flooding on September 1, 2022 as a surge of water flowed down the Indus river, leaving part s of Dadu district inundated.
• Meanwhile, Climate Change Minister Sherry Rehman told a summit that `monster` monsoon floods had washed away 45 per cent of country`s cropland, mainly in Sindh and caused around $10 billion in damages on the whole. In her estimation, around 70pc districts in the country are now underwater. Overall, a third of Pakistan or an area roughly the size of the UK is inundated.
• According to official data, the number of affected districts now stands at 110, including 34 in Balochistan,33 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 16 in Sindh and the rest in Punjab, Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Kashmir
2. FPA exemption extended to 300 unit consumers
• Blaming the previous Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government for what he called the `woes` the country was faced with, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on September 1, 2022 announced an exemption from Fuel Price Adjustment (FPA) charges for electricity consumers utilising a maximum of 300 units in August.
• The prime minister also wished to rid thecountry of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) clutches and said the current agreement with the Fund should be the last programme availed by the government.
• `Earlier, we gave an FPA exemption to the consumers using less than 200 units and bore the burden of Rs21 billion that covered 48 to 52 per cent of power consumers. But I told my economic team that it was not enough… so today we have decided that the facility should be passed on to the consumers using a maximum of 300 units,` PM Sharif said while addressing a gathering of national and provincial lawmakers. `This (exemption of 300 units) will cover 75pc of the consumers across the country
3. Inflation refuses to cool down, hits 49-year high
• The headline inflation measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) surged to a nearly 49-year high of 27.3pc in August from a year earlier, official data showed on September 1, 2022, mainly driven by rising food and energy prices.
• Price hikes in staples, including vegetables, wheat and cooking oil, led the high inflation, the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) said in a statement. In July, annual CPI inflation was 24.9pc, the highest in over 14 years.
• By contrast, August`s 27.3pc inflation was the highest on record since 1973-1974, PBS spokesman Ateequr Rehman told Dawn.com. Meanwhile, Arif Habib Corporation said the figure was the highest since November 1973.
• The CPI index has since mostly remained below 15pc, with a few exceptions in November 2008, when it was recorded at 24.3pc
4. UK, Denmark, France to send aid to Pakistan
• As floods continue to devastate the southern part of the country, Pakistan on September 1, 2022 received 15 million pounds (1 pound=$1.15) from the United Kingdom and 10 million Danish Krone (1 Krone=$0.13) from Denmark as the global community stepped up efforts to provide relief to over 30 million flood hit people.
• By Jamal Shahid and Amin Ahmed France also pledged an `extraordinary operation` to provide emergency relief to Pakistanis shattered by floods as Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari talked to his French counterpart regarding the humanitarian crisis brewing in the country.
• The latest funding by the UK came after London provided 1.5 million pounds to Pakistan for relief operations last week. The UK is providing further urgent life-saving support to Pakistan following devastating floods that have left a third of the country underwater, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss announced
5. Nadra biker service launched to facilitate applicants
• Minister for Interior Rana Sanaullah on September 1, 2022 launched the Nadra biker service for carrying out processes of CNIC renewal and modification at the doorsteps of applicants.
• During his visit to the Nadra headquarters, the authority`s chairman Tariq Malik briefed the minister about its operations in Sindh, Balochistan and south Punjab which have been badly affected by devastating floods and heavy rains.
• The minister was informed that the monsoon rains and floods had caused heavy losses to most of the buildings of NRCs which were inundated by floodwater; however, the equipment has been saved and evacuated.
• Houses of 150 Nadra employees in those areas have been damaged