At least 17 people, including six women and three children, drowned in the Indus River as a boat carrying 25 flood-affected people capsized near Sehwan in Jamshoro on Monday, district administration officials and medics said.
They said that eight people survived the incident, while the divers managed to retrieve 12 bodies by evening. The eight rescued people were shifted to Syed Abdullah Shah Medical Institute, Sehwan, where the doctors said that some of them were in critical condition.
The local fishermen and boatmen as well as the Pakistan Navy personnel were engaged in the search and rescue. Sindh Chief Minsiter Murad Ali Shah, who was himself was in Jamshoro on Monday, directed the top officers of Hyderabad Division to personally supervise the search for bodies.
The boat was ferrying the people from Bilawalpur to Talti embankment on the other side of the river, according to Jamshoro Deputy Commissioner Capt (retd) Fariduddin Mustafa. “The boat was crossing the river with the people from Bilawalpur to Talti,” he said.
The people blamed the boatman for carrying passengers beyond the boat’s capacity. “The greedy boatman overcrowded the boat with 25 persons so that he could make more money,” Muhammad Rahupoto, who claimed that his relatives were on the boat, told media persons.
The 12 bodies were identified as Wakeelan Khokhar, 45; Mehnaz Noonari, 45; Sughra Umrani, 40; Farooq Khokhar, 20; Nasir Noonari, 15; Rehan Khokhar, eight; Shahzore Noonari, five; Zubeda Shahmer Noonari, Iqra Umrani, Reshma Khokhar and Sameena Khokhar.
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