Criticism of Pakistani Government Intensifies as Heatwave Death Toll Tops 1,000

TIME

The Pakistan government continued to face the nation’s ire Wednesday over what critics call its inadequate preparation for and response to a devastating heat wave sweeping the southern Sindh province.

Opposition lawmakers slammed Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s ruling party in parliament over the repeated power cuts and water shortages that have considerably worsened the crisis, Pakistan’s Dawn newspaper reported. Many accused the government of “inaction” in the face of hundreds of deaths in the provincial capital Karachi—the country’s largest city—and its surrounding areas.

Over 1,000 people have now died from heat-stroke or related medical problems, a majority of them poor and elderly people without access to air conditioning. The escalating problems from the heat wave prompted the government to declare a public holiday on Wednesday so people could stay indoors, according to the New York Times, and though the resumption of sea breezes from the country’s southern coast contributed…

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