Pakistan is experiencing the worst floods in decades, with over 60% of the country being currently inundated. Besides rendering hundreds of thousands of people homeless, the floods have swept away whatever little they had.
As the Met Office doesn’t see an end to the devastating monsoon spell anytime soon, the destruction is only expected to grow in coming days bringing more misery to the already distraught.
While everyone is doing what they can to make lives easier for the affected, Pakistan’s telecom regulator and cellular mobile operators have also joined forces to at least keep the people of flood-hit areas connected in these tough times.
PTA, in its recent tweet, has said that the regular and all mobile operators are extending their full support to those affected by floods in these rough times. “CMOs will offer free on-net voice calls with zero balance in flood-hit areas,” PTA added.
پاکستان ٹیلی کمیونیکیشن اتھارٹی (پی ٹی اے) اور موبائل فون آپریٹرز (سی ایم اوز) اس مشکل وقت میں سیلاب متاثرین کے ساتھ کھڑے ہیں ۔ سی ایم اوز سیلاب سے متاثرہ علاقوں میں اپنے تمام صارفین کو زیرو / صفر بیلنس کے ساتھ (آن نیٹ/ایک ہی نیٹ ورک پر)مفت وائس کالز فراہم کریں گے۔
— PTA (@PTAofficialpk) August 27, 2022
The regulator has also said that it’s doing everything in its capacity to ensure connectivity in the flood-hit areas, while appreciating the telcos’ crucial role in ensuring swift relief for the flood victims across Pakistan.
Cellular operators have already started to effectively respond to the need and make their specific free call offers public.
Jazz – Free On-Net and PTCL Calls
Jazz, Pakistan’s leading telecom and digital services provider, has announced free Jazz-to-Jazz and Jazz-to-PTCL calls in Baluchistan, Sindh, and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.
(1/3) سیلاب سے متاثرہ علاقوں میں لوگوں کی سہولت اور امدادی سرگرمیوں کو جاری رکھنے میں مدد کیلئے جاز سے جاز اور جاز سے پی ٹی سی ایل رابطے کے لیے صارفین کو مفت منٹس فراہم کیے جا رہے ہیں
آج رات سے بلوچستان میں جاز صارفین بنڈلز یا بیلنس ختم ہوجانے کے باوجود بھی کالز کر سکتے ہیں
— Jazz (@jazzpk) August 26, 2022
Jazz has also said that it would soon announce plans to deliver relief goods to the flood-hit areas in collaboration with federal and provincial governments.
“Despite severe challenges, Jazz is trying its best to continue providing necessary connectivity services in the flood-hit areas,” Jazz said.
Telenor – Free On-Net Calls
Telenor, Pakistan’s second largest telecom operator, has also come up with its free calls offer for the flood-affected.
“Telenor Pakistan is offering free Telenor-to-Telenor calls in severely hit areas of the country so that residents can stay connected to their loved ones and reach out to authorities to seek help in these challenging times,” a press statement from Telenor said.
This facility will enable users who have zero balance or have run out of their bundles and packages, to make calls and stay connected, it added.
Ufone – Free On-Net and PTCL Calls
Ufone has also come up with its free call offer for the flood victims where it’s offering free calls from Ufone-to-Ufone and on PTCL numbers in the flood-affected districts. This offer is valid for both prepaid and postpaid customers.
According to Ufone, the offer is currently accessible in Barkhan, Sibi, Kalat, Matiari, Bolan, Jacobabad, Mastung, Naushahro Firoz, Ghotki, Shikarpur, Musakhel, Khairpur, Naseerabad, Kashmore, Tando Muhammad Khan, Tando Allah Yar, Sukkur, Rajanpur, Jaffarabad, Larkana, Thatta, Dadu, Lasbella, and Jamshoro.
Ufone customers can avail of the facility by dialing *4357#.
PM’s Flood Relief Fund 2022
Furthermore, PTA has also introduced a new SMS code for flood relief donations. You can now use the shortcode 9999 to donate funds to the Prime Minister’s Flood Relief Fund 2022.
You can donate Rs. 10 or more using this SMS facility by typing ‘fund’ in the SMS option and sending it to 9999. You can also provide cash assistance by depositing funds to Flood Relief Fund Account No. ‘G-12164’
📢 PTA has allocated short code: 9999 to enable #mobile subscribers to donate to ‘Prime Minister’s #Flood Relief Fund 2022′.
Users can donate Rs. 10 by typing ‘fund’ in #SMS option and sending to 9999.
— PTA (@PTAofficialpk) August 26, 2022
All mobile network operators in Pakistan have been directed to update the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) regarding the received donations, according to a notification issued by PTA.
The Prime Minister’s Flood Relief Fund 2022 was set up earlier this month to provide financial aid to the victims of devastating floods.