Thursday Jan 16 2020

Underprivileged children forced to work on streets in snow hit Quetta

A child in Quetta sits on a footpath with a shoe-polishing kit as he survives the cold. Photo: Screenshot via

QUETTA: The north and west of Balochistan has been blanketed by snow as extreme cold has hit the region.

Despite the extreme temperatures affecting almost everyone in the province, children — especially those forced to work on the streets due to financial woes at home — have been the most severely impacted.

A video of an underprivileged child shivering in the cold in Quetta has gone viral on social media, leaving people heartbroken as they emphathised with him.

Read more: Local hero rescues more than 100 people stuck in Quetta snow

In the video, the child can be seen sitting in a corner on a footpath with a shoe-polishing kit, trying to protect himself from the cold.

This is the situation for a lot of other street children, who are forced to be out on the alleyways and roadsides to earn money for their families due to poor economic conditions.

While some children pick up trash, others carry weighing machines or try to sell small items as a way to earn a living. Some, on the other hand, roam the city selling peanuts to people on the roads because if they don’t, their families might not be able to even light a stove at home.

Read more: Heavy rain, snowfall: Emergency declared in Balochistan as death toll rises

“My father is a patient. I earn around Rs500-600 every day,” said one of the street kids.

“I feel very cold in this weather,” he added.

Bound in the snow-cold weather of Quetta, these kids have become a worrisome picture of helplessness. Their question to the society and relevant authorities is: “Whose responsibility is it to cater to their and their families' needs?”