November 27, 2020

Myths, Mind-set, and Expectations of Thari People

Shewa Ram Suthar

In Pakistan, there is no city that sells its things at an affordable and cheaper price and buys the things at a higher price from other cities.  But Tharparkar is the only one who is still practicing this behaviour. Thaparkar, where everything is organic and pure and the entire district is blessed with pure things, but all those fortunes are connected only with the rains. When it rains, blessings come with it. If it doesn’t rain, every people has to fight hunger, poverty, and other issues.  The Hospitality still holds the hearts of the Thari people, with a mind-set that all hospitality is in line with tradition and their identity – they cannot sell milk when there is a wedding in the village, All the houses in this village contribute milk for free. There are many more examples that are alive in the 21st century. The Thari people still do not mix anything even in the relationship. Even today, you can find desi ghee and unadulterated honey in every village at very good rates.  But others do not do justice to Thari people, they are buying things from Thar and they are mixing other things after purchase. These are the people who are setting a bad example in the name of Thar. 

Tharparkar always sells naturally grown fruits and vegetables after rains. And no rates are fixed by the district authority, they only sell at their own will and wish. But most items are sold at cheap prices. After the rains in Thar, outsider traders or businessmen are benefiting the most. They all come to buy things at these cheap rates Locals are not getting proper advantage of it. The biggest role in selling all these things is played by little boys and girls. 

Thari People sell highly pure and indigenous Products at very low prices without going to the list according to the local market. Thari indigenous products everyone wants to buy from the Thar area because, after the rain, all the vegetables are organic so they all prefer the vegetables coming from the Thar area. Neighbouring districts of Tharparkar i.e. Umerkot, Mirpurkhas, and Sanghar purchase all the vegetables through small middlemen at very low rates. They mostly engage children in the collection from the local field and then they are purchasing from them. And in other cities where things come from That. They buy things at cheaper rates and sell them at higher rates.  Every district prepares a rate list of all grocery items but there is no such practice in the Thar area.

In the winds of Thar, the children (Girls and Boys) both destroying their lives.  On rainy days, all the children of Thar villages wake up early in the morning. They go to the fields to pick vegetables without having breakfast or taking tea. They spend three to four hours in the morning collecting fruits and vegetables as per season. And from noon to dusk they stand on the road in the scorching sun to sell their goods. They have no demand, they don’t have to run the expenses of household chores, they work day and night only for pocket money. This concept was not in Thar at first but gradually this becomes increased due to copied habit. Take for example the local Thar, if someone buys a TV, everyone will have a copy of that person, they will buy a TV with a loan.

They don’t have any demand, they work day and night just to fulfill the basic needs. This practice is common in Thar and found everywhere in small and large areas of Thar. They get a day’s wages for just a few rupees. After standing in the sun for a long time, they are forced to sell things at a cheaper rate and go back with the small money in which even they can not purchase the major grocery items. 

You look at different universities, most of the boys and girls from Thar are in the majority who top in these universities, but some children are deprived even from basic education, but they do not get proper guidelines. There are many children in Tharparkar who want to get an education but their parents do not have enough money to do anything for their children. Some children are like that, they are lucky, they are studying with the support of someone and after getting an education they will go to a good position. It is a saying that not everyone has the same destiny but all from Thar believe in destiny. They have no plans in their lives. They folded their hands and sat down. Then, by the will of destiny, if destiny is good, they are taken away. You will find multi-skilled children at Tharparkar who also do a lot at a young age. If they have the proper guidelines, they should go beyond the seventh heaven.

Currently, during rainy days, most of the mushrooms are in the Thar areas which everyone buys with enthusiasm and is also exported from the Thar area to big cities. One thing that has been bothering me for days and I thought to write about it. In Thar, boys and girls are not taken care of. There is a lot of child labour concept and there is no one to stop them. These children sell things for their immediate needs and some of their habits are getting worse from above. They have also started asking passers-by for money. For one thing, I was sad and upset, the owners of the small and large hotels in the different tehsils of Tharparkar they hire small children to collect the vegetables from the areas. Then they give some money to these children in exchange for a lot of expensive vegetables. They are spoiling the habits of all the children. Then the child goes to the hotel all day to sell vegetables in the evening. And they get only fifty to one hundred rupees in his wages. If you go to the Thar, you will find a three-year-old child standing on the road selling things as per season, now the mushroom season is on peak they are selling mushroom on 80 to 100 rupees per kilo. If you buy these mushrooms from the city, you will not get less than PkRs. 500 per kg. This is just one example, In Thar, all the things are being sold at a very cheap rate.

Thar needs a better solution and tricks of proper marketing. So that people who want to sell things have a proper benefit of these things. Currently, they have no experience yet, they are selling their expensive things at cheap rates in a hurry in on- season. If they sell everything off-season, the people of Thar will benefit more. They need to work more on the value chain Because Thar is not getting any benefit these days due to a lack of marketing strategy. We request the district authority to take some initiative so that the people can get maximum benefit.  If things get preserved in on-season, then they’ll get more benefit after season. The children who have started selling things on the road should also be stopped as these innocent children will able to focus on their education. After the Thar coal projects, many vehicles ply on the roads of Thar all day long. They also have a different problem. Every day accidents happen due to animals and even the lives of innocent children are at high risk. The district authority needs to take this matter seriously and take some action. Otherwise, the days will pass and the poor people will continue to grind in the mill of poverty and other issues.

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