It’s Called Dignity

Mohammad Hanif, author of the Booker Prize-listed novel “A Case of Exploding Mangoes“, writes for the Guardian about the worsening aftermath of the floods in Pakistan and the lot of Pakistan’s poor, floods or not.

Last month, in a camp set up for flood refugees outside Pakistan’s southern city of Sukkur, a group of men and boys gathered around the medical tent complaining about the rising cases of stomach infections. “They give us food that’s too spicy,” they said.

“What do they give you?” I asked a young man.

“Korma,” he said. “But they put too many spices in it. We don’t like these spices.”

A relief worker at the camp who overheard our conversation cursed under his breath. “They get to eat korma every day and still they complain.” The implication was clear: could they afford to eat korma before this flood made them homeless? Shouldn’t they be grateful?

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