Bhoja Air crash in Rawalpindi: ‘No chance of survivors’

Published: April 20, 2012

Pakistani airport civil aviation officials put up a sign with a help line number as relatives of victims of a plane crash near Islamabad gather nearby, at the airport in Karachi on April 20, 2012. PHOTO: AFP

Pakistani airport civil aviation officials put up a sign with a help line number as relatives of victims of a plane crash near Islamabad gather nearby, at the airport in Karachi on April 20, 2012. PHOTO: AFP Rescue workers peer over a document as they search for survivors among the wreckage of Bhoja Air B4-213. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD JAVAID/EXPRESS TRIBUNE Pakistani villagers look at the debris from a plane following the crash of a Bhoja Air Boeing 737 on the outskirts of Islamabad on April 20, 2012. PHOTO: AFP Qamar (R), an uncle of a newly married couple who were victims of the Bhoja Air airliner crash, is consoled by a Civil Aviation Authority official at Jinnah International Airport in Karachi April 20, 2012. PHOTO: REUTERS A plane wheel (C) lies amongst debris at the scene of a plane crash as Pakistani rescue workers search for victims in the outskirts of Islamabad on April 20, 2012. PHOTO: AFP Army soldiers search through debris following the crash of a Bhoja Air Boeing 737 plane in the outskirts of Islamabad on April 20, 2012. PHOTO: AFP rescue workers search through debris following the crash of a Bhoja Air Boeing 737 plane in the outskirts of Islamabad on April 20, 2012. PHOTO: AFP Boeing 737 of Bhoja Air, travelling from Karachi to Islamabad, was carrying 121 passengers. PHOTO: ATHAR KHAN/ THE EXPRESS TRIBUNE Rescue workers and local residents search the site of a plane crash in Rawalpindi on April 20, 2012. PHOTO: AFP Relative of a passenger on board Bhoja aircraft reacts at Karachi airport. PHOTO:  ATHAR KHAN/ THE EXPRESS TRIBUNE

RAWALPINDI: A passenger airliner crashed near Islamabad on Friday while trying to land during a thunderstorm, officials said, with all 127 people on board believed to be dead. 

The Bhoja Air flight from Karachi burst into flames after coming down in fields near a village on the outskirts of capital Islamabad as it tried to land in rain and hail at the city’s international airport.

The airline said the Boeing 737-200 was carrying 121 passengers, including 11 children, as well as six crew.

The black box of the ill-fated aircraft has been found, CDA chairman displayed to the media.

Speaking to media early on Saturday, Rehman Malik said that the crash will thoroughly investigated and an investigative committee will be constituted soon which will examine all possible reasons for the crash.

He further said that Farooq Bhoja had been placed on the Exit Control List. He ensured that action will be taken against the culprits.

“There is no chance of any survivors. It will be only a miracle. The plane is totally destroyed,” police official Fazle Akbar told AFP from the crash site.

So far 110 bodies have been recovered from the crash site, Brigadier Sarfraz Ali, who is heading the recovery efforts, told reporters.

“We cannot identify them because some of the bodies are not recognisable,” he said.

Debris from the crash was scattered over a two kilometre (mile and a half) radius, he said, adding that lights had been brought to the site to allow work to continue through the night.

Torn fragments of the fuselage, including a large section bearing the airline’s logo, littered the fields around the village of Hussain Abad, where the plane came down.

Rescue workers in orange jumpsuits and local residents used torches to search through the wreckage after nightfall, assisted by soldiers carrying assault rifles.

Part of the airline’s name could be read on a large section of ripped white fuselage from the passenger cabin.

The smell of burning filled the air at the scene and human limbs were scattered in a large area spattered with blood, witnesses said.

An AFP reporter saw an orange flight data recorder in a house where some of the wreckage fell.

Pakistan Navy official Captain Arshad Mahmood said the crash happened as the plane approached the runway to land.

“The weather was very bad, there was hail and thunderstorm. The pilot lost control and hit the ground. It tossed up due to the impact and exploded and came down in a fireball,” he said.

Saifur Rehman, an official from the police rescue team, said the plane burst into flames after impact.

“Fire erupted after the crash. The wreckage is on fire, the plane is completely destroyed,” Rehman told Geo television.

An airport source said the plane had been due to land at Islamabad airport at 6:50pm but lost contact with the control tower at 6:40pm and crashed shortly afterwards before reaching the runway.

A probe has been ordered into the crash, Defence Secretary Nargis Sethi said, warning that traffic caused by people trying to get to the site was hindering rescue efforts.

“A team of investigators comprising senior civil aviation officials have immediately started investigations,” Sethi said.

“We are working under the direct supervision of president and prime minister.”

Nadeem Khan Yusufzai, director general of Pakistan’s Civil Aviation Authority, said initial reports suggested the bad weather was to blame for the crash.

Bhoja Air relaunched domestic operations with a fleet of five 737s in March, according to newspaper reports, when the airline was planning to start flights connecting Karachi, Sukkur, Multan, Lahore and Islamabad.

Bhoja had been grounded in 2000 by the Civil Aviation Authorities amid financial difficulties, the reports said.

The worst aviation tragedy on Pakistani soil came in July 2010 when an Airbus 321 passenger jet operated by the private airline Airblue crashed into hills overlooking Islamabad while coming in to land after a flight from Karachi.

All 152 people on board were killed in the accident, which occurred amid heavy rain and poor visibility.

The deadliest civilian plane crash involving a Pakistani jet came in 1992 when a PIA Airbus A300 crashed into a cloud-covered hillside on its approach to the Nepalese capital Kathmandu, killing 167 people.

The passenger list can be viewed here.

End of live updates

11: 30pm

Federal Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira, while speaking to Express News said that while availability of lights was a problem, all available resources had been deputed at the crash site to look for survivors among the wreckage.

He added that cold stores had been arranged so that body parts of the victims can be preserved till a time all the dead had been accounted for and identified. He said NADRA too had been directed to provide fingerprinting and DNA identification facilities to identify the dead.

Giving details of travel arrangements made for the families of the crash victims, he said that two flights had been arranged to fly to Islamabad on Saturday morning.

CAA authorities say last communication between the ill-fated Bhoja Air plane and Control Tower last took place at 6:40pm. They further revealed that all records of the Air Control Tower has been sealed.

11:15pm

Army officials in charge of the search and rescue operation at the crash site say that they have recovered 110 bodies, which have been dispatched to hospital.

Revealing that efforts to locate the blackbox were so far unsuccessful, he said that due to the jungle terrain over which the plane had crashed and the lack of lights which were available to the forces, search operations had become difficult.

Express News reporter Qamarul Munawar said that army troops were using sniffer dogs to locate the remains of the crash victims.

Heavy rain has started at the crash site.

Speaking to Express News, deputy chief of Pilot North PIA, Inamullah Jan said that flight B4-213 was a 24 year old 737-200. However, he maintained that the aircraft was flight worthy and no aircraft can fly till it has been given a clean bill of health by the CAA.

10:30pm

Federal Interior Minister Rehman Malik, while talking to Express News from the site of the crash said that orders had been issued from the President to conduct a thorough investigation in to the crash. At the moment, Malik said that he and the Prime Minister were deciding on the level of team that will be set up to lead an investigation into the crash.

He added that while search and rescue operations were still underway, they had yet to find any survivors. He also urged that relatives of the victims should refer to PIMS hospital in Islamabad as all bodies are being sent there, and will be identified.

Confirming that arrangements had been made for the relatives of the victims to be taken to Islamabad, Malik said that not only transport to Islamabad had been arranged, but Islamabad accommodation, and additional shuttle to the hospital is being arraged. “We will extend our complete cooperation to them [relatives of victims],” the Interior Minister said.

Highlighting the obstacles, Malik said that the region where the plane had crashed was engulfed in darkness, and worse still the crash took place over a jungle.

Meanwhile, Bhoja Air officials say plane had been given a clean bill of health before take off

Express News reporter Naeem Khanzada reported that Bhoja Air official Mushtaq while addressing a press conference at Karachi airport had said that flight B4-213 had been cleared by flight engineers before starting its ill-fated journey to Islamabad.

Meanwhile a Bhoja Air official, H. R. Ishaq, who arrived at the airport, was immediately surrounded by relatives of the crash victims. He suggested that the plane had crashed due to bad weather in Islamabad.

He said that relatives of crash victims will be flown by Bhoja Air to Islamabad on Saturday morning free of cost.

Contrary to air traffic control officials, Bhoja Air representatives said that that suddenly all contact was lost just before the plane crashed.

9:58pm

CAA spokesperson Pervaiz George, speaking to the media, said the authority has arranged a hotel in Islamabad for free stay for the relatives of the victims.

He further said that another Bhoja Air plane will arrive in Karachi at around 10:30pm and will fly with the relatives of the victims to Islamabad.

He added that the plane was in a good condition.

9:52pm

Haleem Adil Shaikh, Advisor to Sindh Chief Minister on Relief Affairs, has been at the Karachi airport all evening and has been talking to the press.

Defence Secretary Narjis Sethi told Express News that operation rooms have been established and civil administration in Islamabad has also been activated. “We are doing everything possible.”

9:46pm

Deputy Commissioner Malir has announced that a PIA flight has been arranged and will take passengers’ relatives free of cost, reported Mirza.

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has expressed grief over the incident.

9:43pm

An official at Islamabad airport said that six flights coming to Islamabad were diverted earlier and landed in Lahore, but the airport has reopened and the flights will start coming back

Eight bodies have been recovered so far and there is no chance of survivors. The wreckage has spread over 1.5km, reported The Express Tribune’s Umer Draz.

A Bhoja Air flight will be leaving around 11 pm with one member from each family of those killed in the crash, reported Shaheryar Mirza.

9:35pm

Defence secretary says Islamabad airport will not be closed.

An investigation team has been formed, headed by Group Captain Mujahidul Islam, on the orders of Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani.

9:31pm

A man who had been at waiting at Islamabad’s Benazir Bhutto International Airport for the flight yelled “my two daughters are dead” as tears streamed down his face.

In a state of shock, he then slumped in a state of shock on the floor and sat silently as other relatives of passengers crowded around lists of those on board.

Among them was Zarina Bibi, desperate to determine whether her husband was on the Bhoja Air flight. “He called me before leaving Karachi but I don’t know if he was on this flight or not,” said Bibi, whose eyes were red from crying.

9:25pm

“This is not one bit different from what we went through, there is total chaos and there is no one here to help passengers’ families. Only two people are sitting at the desk as before. They are not able to provide a proper passenger list to the public,” Junaid Hamid, AirBlue Crash Affectees Convener, told The Express Tribune correspondent Shaheryar Mirza.

“Last time they weren’t able to give us a flight till early next morning and the passengers this time do not have any answers on when the next flight will be available,” he added.

The worst aviation tragedy on Pakistani soil came in July 2010 when an Airbus 321 passenger jet operated by Airblue crashed into hills overlooking Islamabad while coming in to land after a flight from Karachi.

All 152 people on board were killed in the accident, which occurred amid heavy rain and poor visibility.

9:21pm

Deputy DG of National Disaster Management Authority Mansoor Ahmed told Express News that the rush of the people is hampering the rescue work. “I want to request the people to let our cars reach the area so we can end the operation by tonight.”

Assistant commissioner of the area said that emergency has been declared in all hospitals of Rawalpindi and Islamabad. “Two ambulances just left the site with six bodies. Some bodies were shifted earlier,” he added and requested the people to move away from the area so that the rescue work can be done smoothly.

President Asif Ali Zardari has arranged a chartered plane for the victims’ families to reach Islamabad.

9:14pm

Bhoja Air relaunched domestic operations with a fleet of five 737s in March, according to newspaper reports, when the airline was planning to start flights connecting Karachi, Sukkur, Multan, Lahore and Islamabad.

Bhoja had been grounded in 2000 by the Civil Aviation Authorities amid financial difficulties, the reports said.

9:08pm

Express News correspondent Qamarul Munawwar reported that as all the rescue officials could not reach the site with all their equipment, the locals are helping by providing sheets to wrap the bodies.

He added that not a single body has been taken to a hospital from the site.

9:05pm

A rescue official told Express News that they were facing difficulty in carrying out the rescue operation as the bodies were strewn over a large area and there was very low visibility as there was no light.

“The only light we have is that from cellphones and from cars,” he said.

9:00pm

Interior Minister Rehman Malik said that wings of the plane caught fire before it crashed. Eyewitnesses said that the plane was struck by lightening.

Ten nearby houses were destroyed, but the residents remained safe.

8:58pm

Bodies are being shifted to hospitals.

CAA rescue team has been tasked to search the black box of the plane.

Islamabad airfield has been closed till midnight.

8:50pm

Dead bodies are strewn over a large area.

CDA teams, locals and rescue officials are present on the crash site and are helping rescue efforts.

Concerned people can call at 92-51-9231453 for information.

8:46pm

An official says this cannot be termed a routine accident.

There were conflicting reports about how many people were on board the plane.

A senior defence ministry official said initial reports suggested there were 126 people on board, Civil Aviation Authority said it was carrying 121 passengers and nine crew, and the chief of Islamabad police Bani Amin told AFP from the crash site that 127 were on board.

8:41pm

“There is no chance of any survivors. It will be only a miracle. The plane is totally destroyed,” police officer Fazle Akbar told AFP from the crash site.

8:34pm

Two-kilometre-long traffic jam near Islamabad airport. Ambulances finding it very hard to get through, reports The Express Tribune‘s Vaqas Asghar.

8:30pm

An eyewitness told Express News,” I was parking my car and I felt as if there was an explosion in the air. As plane parts started falling, I felt that I would die too.”

Another eyewitness said that at least 5-10 nearby houses have been destroyed and the bodies were strewn over one kilometre.

The plane blew up while it was in the air, said another eyewitness. It was raining and there was lightening when the plane blew up, he added.

“We could not make out the bodies, they were strewn all over along with plane parts,” he said.

Javed Malik was the co-pilot of the plane.

8:21pm

Saifur Rehman, an official from the police rescue team said the plane came down in Hussainabad village, about three kilometres from the main Islamabad highway.

“Fire erupted after the crash. The wreckage is on fire, the plane is completely destroyed. We have come with teams of firefighters and searchlights and more rescuers are coming,” Rehman told Geo News.

8:18pm

CAA has established a crisis cell at the Karachi airport and relatives of the passengers are asked to call at 92-21-99071384 and 92-21-99071385 for information.

8:15pm

Bhoja Air Public Relations Officer Jasir Abro said, “We want everyone to stop speculating. We’re trying to find out what happened, where, and how it happened. As soon as we find out more information about the crash the list will be made public.”

An information desk has been established on the second floor at Domestic Departures at the Karachi airport and the families of the passengers can receive information from there.

8:13pm

Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani has expressed deep grief over the plane crash. He has directed the CAA to use all resources for the rescue operation, reported The Express Tribune correspondent Sumera Khan.

Group Captain Mujahidul Islam, head of Safety Investigation Board CAA, will lead an inquiry into the incident.

Two operation rooms have been set up at Benazir Bhutto Benazir Bhutto International Airport in Rawalpindi and Jinnah International Airport in Karachi.

8:07pm

Rescue 1122 officials say that no one has survived the crash.

The Express Tribune correspondent Shaheryar Mirza reported that 116 people had travelled on the plane, five were reported to be infants. The flight had six crew members on board.

As many as 100 Army troops have reached the spot and have taken charge of rescue efforts.

Crash site has agricultural land and some residential plots.

7:55pm

Emergency has been declared in all hospitals of Islamabad.

As many as 100 Army personnel are on their way to the crash site for rescue work.

7:53pm

Family members of those on board have started arriving at the airports.

Air traffic control says that they did not receive any distress call from the pilot in the moments before the crash.

7:51pm

Rescue 1122 officials say that the plane has been completed destroyed and it is being feared that there are no survivors.

A witness told Dunya News that dead bodies could be seen lying all around after the jet went down before landing.

7:48pm

Express News Islamabad correspondent Qamarul Munawwar reported that rescue vehicles are still on the roads due to the traffic. The rescue officials claim that CAA is not telling them the exact site of the incident.

7:45pm

CAA former DG Junaid Ameen, talking to Express News, said the bad weather is usually not the cause of plane crashes because planes have equipments which help in dealing with the situation. “Planes are designed to fly in bad weather.”

Air traffic controllers say that the crash happened due to bad weather and confirmed that the plane belonged to Bhoja Air.

Express News correspondent in Karachi, Aftab Ali, reported that five babies were among the passengers.

7:33pm

The plane took off from Karachi at 5:00pm and was supposed to land in Islamabad at 6:40pm but crashed just before touchdown, reported Geo News.

Witnessed told Dunya News that flame could be seen rising from the crash site and the fire has reportedly engulfed several buildings.

Army troops have also been moved to the area where the plane crashed.

7:28pm

Plane was supposed to fly over Jinnah Garden to approach its destination and land at the airport.

The crash site has been cordoned off by Koral police.

7:25pm

Sources say that the plane crashed in a residential area in Jinnah Garden, but it has not been confirmed.

All rescue vehicles of Islamabad and Rawalpindi have been rushed to the spot including fire tenders, but traffic jam near the crash site is hampering rescue vehicles from reaching the site.

7:20pm

CAA authorities have refrained from giving out any official statement.

This was the first flight of Bhoja Air after the service started.

7:17pm

It is currently raining in Rawalpindi and it being suggested that the bad weather could have been the cause of the plane crash.

According to authorities, the plane crashed 10km away from the runway of Islamabad airport, near Chaklala airbase.

Rescue officials from Islamabad and Rawalpindi, as well as the Civil Aviation Authority, have left for the crash site.

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Reader Comments (66)

  • Blithe
    Apr 20, 2012 - 9:28PM

    Just seems that these barrons buy ancient airlines without supportibg engineers , add extra rows to make the seating as cramped as possible , and milk the public.

    And the CAA, the regulatory body is stuffed with political appointees

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  • yajsingh
    Apr 20, 2012 - 9:35PM

    My condolences …

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  • ProudPakistani
    Apr 20, 2012 - 9:36PM

    RIP……(ameen)

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  • bukhari
    Apr 20, 2012 - 9:38PM

    extremely painful.
    what i say,……….. can’t stop my tears. May Allah rest their souls in peace.

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  • Mohammad Ali Siddiqui
    Apr 20, 2012 - 9:45PM

    I am very grieved on the unfortunate incident of Bhoja Air flying between Karachi and Islamabad.

    The authorities should investigate the matter as why the passenger aircraft crashed.

    The compensation of Air Blue have not been paid to the legal heirs of Air Blue and now the Bhoja Air has crashed.

    We ned to did out whether the aircraft before take off was 100% okay for flying between Karachi and Islamabad?

    May Al-Mighty Allah rest the soul of all those passengers in peace who died in this unfortunate incident. Ameen.

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  • Pakistani Muslim
    Apr 20, 2012 - 9:47PM

    Innalillahi wa inna ilaihi raaji’un
    really sad

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  • Sam
    Apr 20, 2012 - 9:53PM

    RIP!!! This is not accident. This is mass murder. This government has blood of these innocent people on it’s hands. If they would have implemented the regulation to ensure flights divert to an alternate route due to bad weather this incident would have not happened. May Allah grant Jannah to all the people died in this tragedy.

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  • Hasan Lodhi
    Apr 20, 2012 - 9:59PM

    First May Allah Bless the souls of those who lost their lives. May Allah also provide courage to those who have lost their loved ones.

    The incident once again remind us of the state of affairs in Pakistan. Almost all airlines have grounded Boeing 737-200′s long time ago. Even Shaheen airline grounded them and Bhoja Airline which takes pride in purchasing Industry’s Junk once again decided to fly them. These planes are not equipped with latest weather pattern detectors which could have been used to detect sudden changes in Air pressures, Downward push of the air caused by changing cloud patterns.

    It is the same airline which was one caught repairing a Airplane tire at a Motor bike repair shop in Karachi.

    How can Civil Aviation allow this firm to operate an Airline and play with people’s life. The Airline must be sued for every single penny their owners have and must be punished to make an example out of them.

    Once again our heart goes out to all the families.

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  • Farhan Rasheed
    Apr 20, 2012 - 10:28PM

    My thoughts and prayers are with all passengers and families through this heartbreaking time.

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  • Shyam
    Apr 20, 2012 - 10:33PM

    My sincerest condolences.

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  • Tamoor R
    Apr 20, 2012 - 10:37PM

    Extremely sad…

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  • MarkH
    Apr 20, 2012 - 10:37PM

    “He further said that another Bhoja Air plane will arrive in Karachi at around 10:30pm and will fly with the relatives of the victims to Islamabad.

    He added that the plane was in a good condition.”
    Well those are some brave people. Is he implying the one that crashed wasn’t in good condition and they still used it?

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  • Pakistani
    Apr 20, 2012 - 10:43PM

    Sad news. Abandoned worn out aircrafts have become a flagship of our air industry. PIA is no exception. Incidents like such are a constant reminder to the authorities of how fragile the whole system has become. Bhoja air’s ‘fleet’ consists of some antique pieces that should be avoided at all costs.

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  • Gilgiti-No voting right but Proud Pakistani
    Apr 20, 2012 - 10:44PM

    so said, God bless peace to all families, the point to consider is that we have no technical and service standard for airline as well, Recommend

  • Arijit Sharma
    Apr 20, 2012 - 10:47PM

    These are testing times for the nation of Pakistan – first Siachen, and now this devastating loss of life. May the Creator give you strength. Sincerest condolences.

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  • Saad
    Apr 20, 2012 - 10:56PM

    such a sad incident. CAA should immediately ground all 737′s.

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  • Zain
    Apr 20, 2012 - 10:58PM

    As usual no standard operating procedure could be seen. For every type of disaster we must have some SOPs ( Standard Operating Procedures) so that we could have Search and Rescue operations and also after that we could have some evidence to sift through them to find a cause of crash. People are just going around the debris and this is very dangerous and that region must be totally sealed as soon as soon as possible as vital clues are very important No one should be allowed and even the media personals inside the crash site should be expelled to have a proper investigation in the end.
    I wonder when our developing nation will follow Europe in disaster management scenarios rather than doing everything on ad hoc basis.

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  • Zain
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:05PM

    The role of media is shameful. To have a breaking news on their hand they are shoving the mic inside the throat of bereaved families who are in Airport in search of their loved one. The media is playing with the emotions of the families and with the people alike.
    Pakistani media news outlets should be more careful and should me more responsible. Government authorities should bar every news channels from airport and crash site as they are only a hindrance and doing nothing and just searching selfishly for any news clues to get points and they damn care about victims.

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  • Hassan Farooq
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:07PM

    Inna Lillahi Wa Inna Ilaihi Rajioon
    May Allah Rest Their Souls In Peace

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  • Asad Ullah
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:09PM

    Very Sad News. Bhoja Air should be immediately closed.

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  • anon
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:11PM

    may the souls of all the passengers who lost their lives in this tragedy R.I.P. ameen

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  • Ch Allah Daad
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:13PM

    Very sad incident. God bless all passengers, crew members and people on the ground.

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  • Jibran
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:18PM

    Head of CAA needs to resign.

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  • john
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:21PM

    Let their souls reach the feet of almighty…amen

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  • yelmaz
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:22PM

    Blithe and others, weak aircraft have nothing to do with this or other recent Pakistani airplane disasters. The 737 has only been phased out of richer airlines due to fuel efficiency. It is still immensely popular amoung second and third tier airlines. 6 flight were diverted today. This one was not. I can can assure you, that is only and only due to pressure from higher up to not divert.

    And that is sad. 127 people have lost thier lives because one person decided it was worth risking their lives to save some money/time.

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  • yelmaz
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:26PM

    Also, it was sickening to see some media outlets so callously show shots of dismembered dead bodies on public TV. And we wonder why we as a people have become so desensitized to what goes on around us.

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  • gp65
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:28PM

    I hope God gives strength to friends , family and loved ones of all people who died so unfortunately.

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  • Mumbai Salsa
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:34PM

    Deep condolence to the family and friends of those who lost life in this tragedy. May God give their dear ones the strength to bear and overcome this grief.

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  • Ali Tanoli
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:41PM

    very sad may allah give place in heaven.

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  • Meekal Ahmed
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:44PM

    @Hasan Lodhi:

    Mr Lodhi,

    You are probably right that this aircraft may not have had all the latest equipment such as a “wind-shear” alert system on-board. That is fairly standard stuff on modern aircraft.

    But we don’t even know whether he did experience wind-shear.

    He was using the precision ILS approach to R30 (as opposed to the non-precision approach that Air Blue was using to R12). There should not have been a problem. It should have been routine. But someone suggested that considering where he impacted the ground, he must have been well-below the 3-degree electronic verticle glide path.

    Why?

    We don’t know. Did wind-shear push him down?

    Did he not have time to recognize it and react? Or did he not react as aggressively as he should have?

    As always, on the “black-boxes” can/will tell us.

    I extend my prayers of those who perished and condolences to their families. .

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  • gujranwala987
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:48PM

    Poor souls did know that it was last day of their lives before getting into this scrappy ancient aircraft used by this bhoja airline.

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  • Apr 20, 2012 - 11:51PM

    Another sad story …

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  • Usman Chatta
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:59PM

    May all those who passed away in the plane crash Rest In Peace. On an another account the shallow and callous response of our media to this is absolutely disgusting. Shoving a microphone in the face of a grieving person whose loved ones have passed away and asking absolutely ridiculous questions like “how do you feel now that he’s gone?” just shows how low channels like Geo in particular have stooped.

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  • PT
    Apr 21, 2012 - 12:03AM

    Very sad. Hope the families can cope with their irreplaceable losses. Life will never be the same for them.

    Lots of requests here for Allah to Bless their souls. Would have been better if He had saved their souls. Babies were on this flight. A cruel God you believe in.

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  • Leylla
    Apr 21, 2012 - 12:10AM

    Definitely an inside job, they’re making place for Indus Air. Slowly every airline in unreliable. In scared its PIA next. Too sad, my country is in pain

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  • Imran
    Apr 21, 2012 - 12:16AM

    Heart felt condolence for the effected families. May Allah bless their sole in eternal peace. Ameen. Very sad. I just remember of my cousin crushed in Air blue. I pray May Allah give strength to all the families who are suffering from their love left them alone. Inna Lillahi Wa Inna Ilaihi Rajioon. May Allah keep every one in His AMAAN Ameen.

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  • Southpole
    Apr 21, 2012 - 12:28AM

    The shocking fact is Average Fleet Age of Airlines in Pakistan!
    Bhoja Air – 27.9 Years
    Shaheen Air – 29.1 Years
    PIA – 16 Years
    Airblue – 3.9 Years

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  • Meekal Ahmed
    Apr 21, 2012 - 12:31AM

    @Sam:
    Whoever makes the rules for diversion, both in the case of Air Blue and now this, the captain is the ultimate authority. The buck stops with him.

    He gets the glamour and the accolades if things work out OK — but he also bears the responsibility of his decisions if it doesn’t.

    HE cannot have it both ways.

    HE must decide whether the conditions are bad enough to warrant a diversion. HE is supposed to adhere to company rules on when a go-around and diversion needs to be made. Rules don’t count for diddly if the captain decides to take a risk and go a little lower so that he can spot the runway visually and make a safe landing from there.

    In this case, a sudden “wind-shear” exerting a downward force on his aircraft may have complicated his plans. We don’t know — yet.

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  • Aamir
    Apr 21, 2012 - 1:17AM

    Inna Lillahi Wa Inna Ilaihi Rajioon

    No words to describe this tragic accident, please pray for the deceased.

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  • usama
    Apr 21, 2012 - 1:19AM

    Inna Lillahi Wa Inna Ilaihi Rajioon
    May Allah Rest Their Souvery sad may aMay Al-Mighty Allah rest the soul of all those passengers in peace who died in this unfortunate incident. Ameen. Allah give place in heavens In Peace

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  • True Muslim Paki
    Apr 21, 2012 - 1:53AM

    Some how, Allah hasn’t been merciful on Pakistan. Siachen & now this. Time for a collective analysis & ask for mercy. I think we haven t been religious enough & not following his words.

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  • vigilant
    Apr 21, 2012 - 2:00AM

    Feeling very sad for loss of lifes…….May Allah bless them with peace and jannah…..Ameen

    SHAME SHAME SHAME SHAME SHAME on CAA for such Poor work……utter negligence…….they should be ASHAMED while collecting their salaries…….
    They think that people are fool…..how can a plane given health certificate from CAA…..cleared for landing by CAA considering weather conditions……flown by airlines given license by CAA….and now investigation will be conducted by CAA…..who are to blame in the first place…..i don’t know what’s going on??????????

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  • Muhammad Hassan
    Apr 21, 2012 - 2:36AM

    This is what happens when you buy planes that others throw away…

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  • gujranwala987
    Apr 21, 2012 - 2:52AM

    @Meekal Ahmed:

    I think it would be clarified once the Black Box of the plane is recovered from the wreckage.

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  • Pakistani
    Apr 21, 2012 - 4:25AM

    Truly sad day. I have to say that the role of media esp on tv was disgraceful and distasteful. They were trying to make it all sensational without regard to human dignity. Opening the wallets of the deceased and showing their ID cards on tv and then criticizing the rescue services even though they were there in 10 mins. Please have some dignity and don’t try to score points.

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  • Yasir
    Apr 21, 2012 - 4:26AM

    Shame on the Pakistani society as a whole Many people in Rawalpindi have reported that many items on the ground site have been stolen and many mobiles and jeweler items have been taken away by our pious people and then the rescue workers and other operatives did the same and most of the jewellery and other items are already taken away by the staff. Such a shameful nation we are.
    Also many people as an enjoyment are visiting the crash site and they choked the place after the incident and hampered the rescue efforts and all i can say i can be ashamed of this and nothing else.

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  • Razi
    Apr 21, 2012 - 4:36AM

    Extremely tragic. From what we are following in the news, it seems the weather was conducive to creating a Microburst, which incidentally wouldn’t care whether the age of the A/C was 20 months or 20 years. It is extremely dangerous when encountered at low altitude such as at the time of landing. What is important is whether or not this A/C had the onboard Windshear detection system. Anyway, its too late to debate this. May Allah grant the families the Sabr to bear their loss. Ameen.

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  • Rafi Ka Deewana
    Apr 21, 2012 - 5:20AM

    This is a serious tragedy. We can analyze the who’s and whys, but will that help the relatives of the victims? The victims themselves probably had no clue even seconds before they died as the plane was so low. May be better that way.

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  • safdar ali khan malik
    Apr 21, 2012 - 7:14AM

    SHAME SHAME SHAME SHAME SHAME for all corrupt Pakistanis. When Pakistan and corruption will go together such incidence will take place.

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  • GI
    Apr 21, 2012 - 7:42AM

    Sad.

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  • Aasia Sohail Mian
    Apr 21, 2012 - 8:40AM

    Extremely grieved on the Bhoja Air Plane Crash. May Allah bless the souls of the deceased and give patience to their families.

    Aasia Sohail
    President Women Labour Wing PTI
    Punjab
    0323-6683813

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  • A M A wills
    Apr 21, 2012 - 8:58AM

    good rid dins

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  • Maria
    Apr 21, 2012 - 9:32AM

    @safdar ali khan malik: Shame on you for passing judgement so quickly in the face of a tragedy. Unfortunately airplanes crash all over the world and it would be premature to start laying blame at this time. Perhaps your concept of decency is different but now is the time to offer condolences to the families of those who lost their lives. An investigation will look into the crash but we have heard that the pilot was an experienced and very competent professional.

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  • Dr.A.K.Tewari
    Apr 21, 2012 - 9:39AM

    Very unfortunate incident . Thorough investigation is a must .

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  • Muhammad Hanif Ramay
    Apr 21, 2012 - 10:00AM

    I am very sad as a citizen of Islamabad on the death of so many precious persons of my land, God may bless them Jant-ul-fardous Ameen
    .

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  • Venuto
    Apr 21, 2012 - 11:17AM

    Very Sad and tragic accident – my condolences to the families of the victims.

    At the same time – modern Aircraft do not just drop out of the sky – this Boeing 737-200 Aircraft was ancient and perhaps not equipped to handle inclement weather the way modern Airplanes can.

    Why does Pakistan allow such an ancient Aircraft to be used…even your neighbor India uses the latest Boeing 737-800 and the modern Airbus A320 which has fly by wire technology to greatly reduce pilot error.

    Does the Islamabad have an up to date Aircraft guidance and landing support system?

    If not then your government is just gambling with the lives of Civilians who choose to fly.

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  • Saqib
    Apr 21, 2012 - 12:08PM

    An another collateral damage done because of ire-responsibility .. Bhoja Air line must be banned immediately

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  • Stewie Griffin
    Apr 21, 2012 - 2:16PM

    Why can’t they buy some Boeing 787 dreamliners and Airbus A380s.

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  • dave
    Apr 21, 2012 - 2:34PM

    This is the second crash in Islamabad in one year! Airline incompetance notwithstanding surely the airport perisonnel and its landing procedures also need to be questioned. The conversation of control tower to Airblue Captain was never made public. No one from CAA sacked. Also we have a major airport in Pakistan ( Capital no less) used for both Civilian and Military purposes. In thtis day and age with so much air traffic Islamabad airport is not equipped for so many flights. Are people’s lives are worth so little that we dont care about these facts?

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  • gujranwala987
    Apr 21, 2012 - 4:22PM

    They should make an example out of bhoja airline for using sub-standard planes in the 21st century.Recommend

  • Alish
    Apr 21, 2012 - 5:20PM

    Extremely sad…..May God comfort those who losses their loved once in this horrible crash ! as usual no action will be taken against culprits.

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  • Apr 21, 2012 - 5:38PM

    A very tragic incident and loss….May their sould rest in peace and may Allah give strength to their families to cope with the tragic loss (Ameen)

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  • Sabeeka
    Apr 23, 2012 - 1:19PM

    No matter what, It is your nation. Such things happen all over the world in numerous nations, they dont bark like you guys are, its very easy to type but hard to do some positive action, respected sons of respected fathers !!!!!Recommend

  • May 6, 2012 - 5:22PM

    there is no good accident

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  • maha asif
    Jun 4, 2012 - 3:11PM

    The reason for the crash is that while landing somebody switched on their mobilephones to contact their families that they were landing. As soon as they were coming towards the runway a ray of lightning somehow caught the signal and hit the plane. I have this opinion because I’ve travelled many times by air and also when it is raining or a thunderstorm has hit but there was Alhumdulillah no damage, only some turbulence.

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  • BASHIR KAMIN
    Jun 14, 2012 - 10:46PM

    May all those who passed away in the plane crash Rest In Peace. On an another account the shallow and callous response of our media to this is absolutely disgusting. Shoving a microphone in the face of a grieving person whose loved ones have passed away and asking absolutely ridiculous questions like “how do you feel now that he’s gone?” just shows how low channels have stooped. Recommend

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