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Friday May 22 2020
Web Desk

Outpouring of grief: Nation comes together on PIA plane crash tragedy

Web Desk

The national leadership on Friday expressed sadness on the plane crash in Karachi's Model Colony with Prime Minister Imran Khan promising an inquiry into the incident. 

Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) passenger flight PK-8303 crashed on Friday in a residential area near Karachi's Jinnah International Airport after losing its engines.

It is estimated that 98 people were aboard the Airbus A-320 aircraft when it crashed, including 91 passengers and seven flight crew.

The news has led to an outpouring of grief: the tragedy of the incident compounded by the fact that the festival of Eid was just around the corner, and many of the victims were likely returning to their families to celebrate.

Prime Minister Imran Khan said he is "shocked and saddened" by the crash.

He said he is in touch with PIA CEO Arshad Malik who is on his way to Karachi, adding "this is the priority right now".

The premier promised that an inquiry will immediately be instituted. He extended "prayers and condolences" to the families of the deceased.

President Arif Alvi has prayed for the those who lost their lives in the tragic incident.

Former president Asif Ali Zardari also expressed sorrow over the lives lost in the crash and instructed party leaders to provide relief to the affectees.

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said he is "deeply grieved" over the "devastating plane crash" with so many people minutes away from being home for Eid.

He said his prayers are with all the families.

"We are in midst of grave challenges as a nation and in these times of trial we must show resolve and unity," the foreign minister said.

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Communications, retired Lt Gen Asim Bajwa expressed grief and said the PM has directed mobilisation of all resources for relief operations.

"Our heart goes out to all families of on board passengers of the ill fated PIA plane that just crashed close to Karachi Airport. On PM’s directions, all emergency services & resources mobilised, evacuation in progress," he said.

Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah directed the police chief and the commissioner Karachi to ensure all possible assistance at the crash site.

PPP Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has expressed shock and deep grief over the PIA crash and called for urgent rescue operations.

He said the painful incident has grieved the entire country ahead of Eid.

The PPP chairperson offered condolences and prayers for those whose loved ones were on board.

Human Rights Minister Shireen Mazari said that the "horrific PIA crash" was a "national tragedy".

"What can one say - except pray for all the families who have lost their loved ones to find an inner strength to cope with this tragedy," she added.

Former finance minister Miftah Ismail said that the news of the crash was "so distressing" and that his "heart goes out to the loved ones of all those who perished".

"Proud of the civilians and law enforcement ppl who put their lives on the line in carrying out the rescue," he said.

Chief Minster Balochistan Jam Kamal also expressed deep condolences over the crash.

He prayed that Allah Almighty may grant patience to the bereaved families Jannah to the victims of plane crash.

Former sports star Shoaib Akhtar asked for God's blessings for those whose lives were lost. 

"May Allah bless every soul we lost in this," he wrote.

Others were grieved of the tragedy ahead of Eid. 

Sports journalist Zainab Abbas expressed sorrow at the incident, saying it was "so disturbing to hear about the plane crash".

"Strength and love to all the families who have lost their loved ones," Abbas added.