KARACHI: It’s time we gave up the tokenism for our climate struggle, something we have done so far by limiting ourselves to tree plantation and trash picking campaigns to take photos of, and instead resisted anything and everything making our climate worse without remorse, said Sunday one of the Climate March organizers, Aiman Naqvi, on the catastrophe “in the making”.
The marchers, comprising various activist and political groups, bagan their protests around the climate woes, made worse by the alleged indifference of, or lukewarm measures by, the people at the helm of affairs.
Their walk began from Boat Basin to reach Bilawal House, however, they were stopped by the law enforcement agencies halfway. The marchers then staged a sit-in outside the fortified Karachi Grammar School and chanted slogans against anti-environment policies and the policymakers.
Among the protesters were the people from Karachi Bachao Tehreek who raised their demands around climate woes and placed housing crisis at the heart of problem.
The rhetoric of Roti, Kapra aur Makaan [slogan by Sindh’s ruling PPP that translates to ‘Food, clothes and house’] is a phoney catchphrase used to attract masses’ votes only to later render them homeless having assumed the rule, said one environmental activist Ahmad Shabbar as he addressed the sit-in.
“Where do you get the roti from? It’s the environment!; where do you get kapra from? Again it’s the environment! Tell me how you’ll protect people from climate change-led miseries when you flatten the roofs from above their heads?”
The multiple party alliance leading the march unequivocally concluded that tokenism has no space anymore to curb the incipient disaster called climate change. “The policymakers and capitalists must be held accountable for the environmental disasters they have inflicted upon people to milk profits and fulfill motives.”
Among the celebrities to address and perform at the march were Hassan Bin Shaheen, stand-up comedian and rapper, and Fawad Khan, famed Storyteller and theater artist.
The Climate March culminated as the sky dusked and a duo comprising flute player Daniyal Ahmed, and a percussionist, who played the tunes that participants hailed and marveled, while some also danced to them.
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