The National Disaster Management Authority’s habit of finding excuses will not do this time around. With already thousands of people uprooted from their homes (reportedly 84,000), and 84 dead, the authorities are warning of more monsoon rains.

It seems the ordeal is just about to get worse because while the weather forecast is that the monsoon has just entered its active phase and would get intense, the kind of measures that should have been visible by now can be barely seen.

The collective picture of different calamity hit areas is again of flooded homes, stranded people, and worse still, sordid relief camps. And although instances of the authorities scrambling to reach out to disaster zones can be found, it was mostly haphazard and without a properly mapped out strategy as to how to house the displaced persons. Last week in just a matter of hours, Karachi (the city thought to be well-protected) turned into a lake as water accumulated halfway through streets and houses in the absence of a good drainage system. But the devastation in other areas like Balochistan, Fata and Punjab took most of the toll on human lives and infrastructure, an evidence of misplaced rescue priorities. It is obvious that abandoning regions like Fata sunk in dire poverty will have political fallout since at places the vacuum will allow the banned outfits to gain sympathisers.

Given that the country has been in the grip of the phenomenon for the past many years, it is high time we enabled ourselves to grapple with such calamites. Granted there might be the aspect of global warming, but does that mean we should assume we are totally helpless against it.

More reservoirs and dams are a must; but as of now the reconstruction and rehabilitation efforts are most urgently needed and nowhere more than in places such as Sindh and remote areas elsewhere where whole tracts of land have been swamped by monsoon. The erratic weather conditions are a real test of NDMA’s alertness that it should not fail yet again.