18 killed, more than 50 injured as truck going to Shah Noorani shrine falls into ditch

HUB: The number of killed passengers has reached 18, while more than 50 remain injured after a truck carrying pilgrims en route to the Shah Noorani shrine fell into a ditch in Balochistan’s Hub district.

Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah, who visited the Civil Hospital’s Trauma Centre to meet with the injured passengers, earlier confirmed 17 deaths, adding that at least 52 injured were brought to the hospital of which 40 were discharged.

“Five injured in the Trauma Center are on ventilators. As long as the injured are on the vent, their health will be critical,” he said.

CM Murad added that two injured children are also under treatment at the National Institute of Child Health (NICH).

“All efforts will be made to provide the best medical facilities to the injured.”

He told journalists that most of the passengers, aboard the ill-fated vehicle, are poor and worked as stone crushers.

Responding to a query about the cause of incident, CM Murad said: “Our prime concern was to shift the people to the hospitals and provide them treatment when the incident took place last night. The reasons behind the accident will be investigated by the Balochistan government, as it occurred within their jurisdiction

Former lawmaker Jam Awais Jokhio, he added, is with the families of the deceased victims to facilitate them.

PM Shehbaz Sharif has also expressed sorrow over the loss of precious lives in the accdient.

The premier has directed for the injured to be provided necessary medical treatment.

Sub-Divisional Police Officer (SDPO) Sakro Wajid Ali said that the driver of the truck, Karim Baksh — who was also injured in the incident — has been taken into custody. The police official added that the accident occurred due to a turn during the drive.

The incident occurred when a truck carrying pilgrims from Thatta had fallen into a ditch in the Hub district, while it was on its way to the Shah Noorani shrine in Khuzdar, Balochistan.

Speaking with journalists outside the Edhi morgue in Karachi’s Sohrab Goth, the police official said: “More than 70 people had left for the pilgrimage from Makli’s Qasim Jokhio village.”

At least 15 out of the 17 deceased have been identified, he added.

Meanwhile, rescue sources said that a total of 17 dead and 38 injured have been identified.

Social worker Saad Edhi informed journalists that the information about the accident was received by 11pm, while the rescue operation was completed within two hours.

He added that the 17 dead bodies were first transferred to the Civil Hospital Hub, then to the Edhi morgue in Sohrab Goth. He added that the 35 injured were brought to the Civil Hospital in Karachi.

Balochistan Chief Minister Sarfraz Bugti also took notice of the incident, directing the district administration to transfer the injured to the hospitals immediately.

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