LAHORE: Pakistanis are among the world’s top nations in giving charity with an annual contribution of around 650 billion but its proper utilization is the biggest challenge.
This was upshot of the speeches delivered at a seminar on Safe Charity here at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry. Lord Mayor Lahore Colonel ® Mubashir Javed, the LCCI President Abdul Basit, Senior Vice President Amjad Ali Jawa, Former President Mian Anjum Nisar, Former Senior Vice President Tahir Javed Malik, Mian Abdul Razzaq, Mian Muhammad Nawaz, Tahir Manzoor Chaudhry, Salman Basit, Social Worker Syeda Deep and renowned scholar Dr. Raghib Naeemi spoke on the occasion.
Lord Mayor Lahore said that business community is not only playing a fundamental role in economic development of the country but is also major contributor to the charity. He said that the Lahore Businessmen Association for Rehabilitation of Disabled (LABARD), under patronage of the LCCI, is the best example of organized charity. Through this forum, philanthropists are helping the ailing humanity. He said that charity must be gone to the deserving people.
Dr. Raghib Naeemi said that safe charity is need of the hour and a must to save country and the society. It must be ensured that charity must be given to the deserving people, not to the anti-social and anti-Pakistan elements as witnessed in the past. It is duty of the state to ensure transparent utilization of charities and donations.
The LCCI President Abdul Basit said that Pakistan embraces the world’s most charity giving cultures as its people are generous that’s why country is regarded as among the world’s top nations in term of giving charity and donations. 98 percent of Pakistani businessmen and masses are philanthropists and are donating to various social causes. He said that biggest challenge is that how this significant amount can be efficiently utilized to benefit the deprived people and deserving welfare organizations.
Abdul Basit said that it is important for charity organizations to work jointly and in consultation with each other to ensure that money coming in form of donations is utilized properly and should not be falling in the hands of fake organizations
The LCCI President added that at this scenario one does not know whether the public giving the donations or charities to genuine organizations. He urged that a pivotal role by the government should be played in informing the public that they have to be very careful while giving donations and need to acquire information about organizations before donating so that their donations do not go in the wrong hands. He said that being the second largest city of Pakistan, Lahore is considered to be the city where people donate more compared to other cities of Pakistan. Charity is given all round the year but people are mostly active in giving charity during the month of Ramazan as around 75% of the people give charity in Ramazan. Only 2% people are aware that their charity may be used to fund the extremist activities.
The LCCI Senior Vice President Amjad Ali Jawa urged that government has to take the initiative to create awareness amongst the public regarding safe charity practices by organizing seminars and sensitization sessions and also involving the local government to inform the public that before donating to any organization they need to acquire information about that organization that whether it is a genuine organization or only collecting donations for their illegal activities.