Community Dialogue – CHK # 323T Chobara
“Challenges Faced by Community During COVID-19″
On 29 March 2021, Transparency International Pakistan arranged a Community Dialogue in CHK. 323 T Chobara with the local village community. The purpose of the gathering is to share experiences of the challenges faced by the community during COVID-19. A total of 30 participants gathered during the session. All of them were males.
The speakers were Mr. Muhammad Ashraf, X-village councilor; Mr. Shafqat Rasool, a businessman; Mr. Mudasir Ahmed, a schoolteacher; Mr. Mohsin Ahmed, a social worker. The session was moderated by TI Pakistan representative, Mr. Ashfaque Ahmed.
Mr. Ashfaque Ahmed initiated the discussion and introduced Transparency International Pakistan, and the objectives of the session. He then asked participants to share their experiences and suggestions.
Mr. Ashraf mentioned that most of the people made fun of Corona and attributed it a foreign agenda. But the youngster did not believe that it is a foreign agenda because the whole world is affected by the virus. The other lot did not take the virus seriously and believed that the virus could not harm someone having strong religious faith. He kept on saying that their MPAs and MNAs did not initiate any awareness campaigns to educate masses. And media was the only source which provided them awareness.
Shafqat Rasool said exorbitant increase in the prices of many commodities have snatched the purchasing power which have made the business down. He said the people were already suffering from taxes, now this pandemic has affected them a lot.
Mudasir Ahmed said that Corona has been lethal for education system. He said, we do not have resources, nor we have trained staff and equipment to educate our children online. He also said that small farmers have been badly affected during the pandemic.
Mr. Mohsin and other participants said that due to the absence of local government aid was not recached to the deserving. He said local government provides a strong community network in which government and people are well connected. He said the government should have restored the old, elected members of the local government during pandemic so that they could work with communities and give them awareness.
Some members pointed out the positive aspects of Corona that marriages have been restricted and people saved money.
In the end, everyone appreciated the efforts of Transparency International Pakistan for providing them such forum to share their experience and raise awareness.