KARACHI: As many as 12 people, including two women, drowned at Hawke’s Bay Beach in Karachi late Saturday afternoon.
Chief Fire Officer Tehseen Siddiqui revealed two people, who were saved by rescue teams, were reported dead a few hours after they were admitted to civil hospital, adding that the deceased belong to the same family and were residents of Shadman Town in North Nazimabad.
All the bodies have been recovered and the rescue operation has been completed.
The deceased have been identified as Muhammad Sami, Faiza, Ali, Misbah, Atif, Saud, Ameer, Hamza, Waqar and Wahaj.
The family had come to the beach for a picnic. According to reports, they were staying at Hut no 99.
It is crucial to note that a worker of the Edhi rescue team informed that lifeguards were also present at the site.
SP Keamari, speaking to a news channel, said that the family was warned four times to not go too deep into the water but they didn’t follow orders.
Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah took notice of the incident and summoned a report over the matter, while chiding the responsible authorities over their lack of action. He asked: “Has section 144 been imposed already?”
Sindh CM also inquired if the signboards regarding the restriction were even placed at the site. He directed the interior secretary to submit a detailed report regarding the incident.
Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif expressed a deep sense of sorrow and grief over the loss of precious human lives due to drowning at Hawke’s Bay Beach. The chief minister expressed condolences and sympathies with the bereaved families and prayed for the departed souls. He said, “All our sympathies are with the aggrieved families and Punjab government equally shares their grief.”
Last month, at least three Saudi nationals drowned at the same beach out of which one was the son of Saudi vice-consul general.
Karachi has witnessed a significant number of drowning incidents in the summer season, despite the ban on swimming.
Beachgoers are advised against bathing in the sea during the monsoon season due to rough waters by the authorities.