Fiasco in Lahore: Drowning child turns out to be dead calf

It was a disaster – just not the one people thought it to be.


Our Correspondent August 05, 2012

LAHORE: It was a disaster – just not the one people thought it to be.

Rescue 1122 was alerted; the electronic media jumped into action, and DCO Lahore, Noorul Amin Mengal took notice, demanding urgent action be taken over a child who had fallen into an open drain near Ravi Hotel.

Except there was no child.

In a series of miscommunications and lack of fact verification, Rescue 1122, the media and the DCO Lahore had taken notice of the death of a calf, which had indeed fallen into an open drain.

Error one

The miscommunication started when a call was made to Rescue 1122 by a person from Faisal Town at 10:23am, who said that a wacha (calf) had fallen into a drain near Ravi Hotel.

Rescue 1122 however mistook the word to be bacha (child).

Error two

The information soon reached electronic media, which, relying on the caller and without any secondary conformation ran the news.

Rescue 1122 also initially confirmed that the caller had said bacha (child). However, the rescue teams that rushed to the spot quickly learnt that the child was a calf, which had already been taken out by locals in the area.

Error three

In the meantime, the DCO Lahore took notice of the news and directed WASA to make suitable arrangements to avoid such incidents in the future. The DCO called for urgent steps to be taken for the drainage of water from roads and streets during and after the rains. He warned that strict action would be taken if any negligence was seen in this regard. The DCO took notice of the incident without any prior confirmation from concerned authorities.

Upon finding out that notice had been taken over the death of a calf, the DCO’s media team said that as per the DCO’s instructions, such statements are issued to the media relying on electronic media’s news. Asked whether or not they had verified the information running on news channels, the media team said notices are immediately taken when news breaks, while concerned departments are questioned about issues afterwards.

Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly translated 'wacha' as lamb. The error has been rectified. 

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COMMENTS (8)

Reader | 8 years ago | Reply ironcally, even you couldnt report the news correctly..having drowned a lamb instead of a calf.. none the less sad news..
Awans | 8 years ago | Reply

@Pani wali Garhi: Well Young male and female goats are not called Bakra or Leela at all in rural Punjab. It is called Bakrota in Punjabi. The young female goat is known as " Bakrota " and Young female goat is known as "Bakroti", Bakra is a Urdu Word while Bakrota and Bakroti are the Punjabi words for the young goats. Likewise a small info that many people dont know what young dogs are called in Punjabi. Young male dog is known as "Katoora" and young female dog is known as "Katoori" in rural Punjabi. It is a good info given if tomorrow some other animal will slip into so they will be able to call correct names.

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