At least 97 people were killed in the Pakistan International Airlines plane crash in Karachi in Pakistan on Friday, Dawn reported. The plane was carrying 91 passengers and eight crew, contrary to earlier reports that said there were 107 people on board.
Meeran Yousuf, the media coordinator for Sindh Province Health Minister Azra Pechuho confirmed that only two people had survived. She identified the survivors as Zubair and Zafar Masood. Zafar is the president of Bank of Punjab.
“Zubair has 35% burns and is being treated at the [Dr Ruth Pfau] Civil Hospital Karachi, while Masood has four fractures and is being treated at the Darul Sehat Hospital,” Yousuf told Dawn. She said both are in stable condition.
Yousuf also said that of the 97 dead, 19 victims have been identified so far.
At least 11 people were injured in the residential area where the plane crashed. A person who had earlier been identified as a survivor from the plane, was later confirmed to be a resident of the area. Yousuf said all 11 injured are in stable condition. However, the total number of injured is not yet known.
Faisal Edhi of the Edhi Welfare Trust said on Friday that at least 25 houses have been damaged. “The first priority is to rescue the people,” he said. “The main hurdle is narrow streets and presence of ordinary people who gathered at the place after the crash but they have been dispersed.”
The Pakistan government has set up a four-member board of inquiry to determine the cause of the crash. Pakistan International Airlines Chief Executive Officer Air Marshal Arshad Malik said that the pilot of the aircraft told Air Traffic Control that there was a technical problem, and chose to go around instead of landing on either of the two runways that were available.
The incident occurred days after the Pakistan government allowed commercial flights to resume operations. The planes were grounded due to the lockdown to tackle the coronavirus spread.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday expressed grief over the incident. “Deeply saddened by the loss of life due to a plane crash in Pakistan,” he tweeted. “Our condolences to the families of the deceased, and wishing speedy recovery to those injured.”
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan thanked world leaders for showing concern. “I thank world leaders for reaching out to condole over the tragic air crash and loss of precious lives,” he tweeted. “The people of Pakistan value this support and solidarity in our hour of grief.”