Red Crescent Society suffers due to financial constraints.
KARACHI: Pakistan Red Crescent Society’s (PRCS) Sindh chapter is suffering from serious financial constraints, with are causing operational stoppages and suspension of critical humanitarian services like it’s blood bank facilities. Currenty, the remaining services of PRCS are being barely funded by donations from some generous philanthropists According to the treasurer of PRCS Sindh- Shaikh Jalaluddin; the services of its blood bank were halted by the PRCS Sindh headquarters, due to non-availability of funds to run the daily affairs of the facility. The society has very little avenues to finance itself. Hefty sums are required to resume the blood bank operations and continue with its daily expenditure and quality maintenance of services. To abide by the laws governing blood transfusion in the province, the institution needs regular cash-flows, which are presently insufficient. According to recent reports, the society is facing a myriad of challenges, like; encroachment of it’s commercial properties by some powerful figures, unrevised rents at its premises in Clifton Karachi, encroachment of 100 shops owned by PRCS in Orangi and the inability of the provincial government to release the promised funds for the society. Some members of the PRCS are in disagreement with the current operational processes being dictated by a group of powerful managers with vested interests — while the managers claim that the operations are being continued with a noble philanthropic spirit. A member of the executive committee – Mehfooz-un-Nabi had recently resigned, stating that; He was ‘dissatisfied’ with the attitude and performance of the committee. The constitution is being violated as some subcommittee conveners are ‘unlawfully’ nominated and were also inducting other unsuitable members. Mehfooz un Nabi also stated that; “Though, the plot and the building constructed thereon was allotted by the government for setting up a blood bank complex, as timely supply of blood to the victims during war and peace is the basic humanitarian responsibility of this society, but the society is ‘unjustifiably outsourcing’ the medical facilities, which were being provided for decades”. The Head of Sindh Blood Transfusion Authority (SBTA) – Dr Zahid Hasan Ansari, confirmed that; he had received a request from the society, in writing, two years ago, stating that it would no longer run the blood bank. Although the SBTA offered them all sorts of help, including the provision of pathologist in the blood bank, but the society simply closed it down. The society has suffered due to false pledges from the government, as it still awaits the promised grant of Rs 20 million, which was announced two years ago, by the chief minister of Sindh. The society had also failed to acquire the ownership title of a warehouse in Landhi area, and another plot on Gurumandir, which was previously encroached by the Provincial Excise & Taxation Department. The rehabilitation centres of PRCS are still helping people in the flood-affected areas and its hospitals and dispensaries continue to work in many parts of Sindh. The Society has nearly 40 fully equipped ambulances, which are working in Karachi and other parts of Sindh.