Islamabad, Jan 29 (PTI) At least 59 people, including over a dozen students, were killed on Sunday in two separate accidents in Pakistan, according to officials.
In the first accident, a bus carrying 48 people from Balochistan's provincial capital Quetta to Karachi, the capital of Sindh province, crashed into the pillar and subsequently careened into a ravine before catching fire in the Lasbela area, Assistant Commissioner Lasbela Hamza Anjum said.
"The speeding bus crashed into the pillar of a bridge while taking a U-turn near Lasbela and fell into a ravine and then caught fire,” he told the media.
Anjum said till now 42 bodies have been recovered from the accident site. The dead included women and children.
Only three people, including a child and a woman, could be rescued alive, the official said, adding that the death toll could rise as the injured were in critical condition.
"There were a total of 48 people on the passenger coaster," he said.
He said the bodies were charred beyond recognition and DNA testing will be done for the identification of the deceased.
Police and rescue officials were busy pulling out bodies and shifting them to the nearby hospitals, according to officials.
Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah expressed grief over the tragedy and extended condolences to the bereaved families.
Such horrific road accidents happen frequently in Pakistan, especially in areas where roads and highways need repairs and no proper safety measures are followed while awarding licenses and permits to commercial vehicles.
In another incident, at least 17 students of a religious seminary were killed when their boat capsized in a lake in northwest Pakistan, according to officials.
The students, aged between seven and 14 years, of Madrassa Mirbash Khel were on an excursion trip when their boat capsized in the Tanda Dam lake in Kohat district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, officials said.
The rescue workers have recovered 17 bodies, they said.
Deputy Commissioner Kohat Furqan Ashraf said the boat was carrying 30 people and most of them were children.
The Pakistan Army's rescue teams have also reached the site of the incident where rescue operations are being carried out.
Caretaker Chief Minister KPK Azam Khan directed the local administration to provide emergency relief to the affected families. PTI SH AYZ MRJ NB ZH NSA