MULTAN: A speeding bus carrying mostly laborers traveling home for a major Muslim holiday rammed into a container truck on a busy highway in central Pakistan on Monday, killing at least 30 people and injuring 40, police and rescue officials said.
The bus had left the city of Sialkot and was traveling on Taunsa Road; its destination was the city of Dera Ghazi Khan in eastern Punjab province, said senior police officer Hassan Javed. The exact cause of the accident is still under investigation, he said.
Rescuers transported the dead and injured to a nearby hospital. According to Sher Khan who was in charge of the rescue team at the site, some of the injured were in critical condition. He said the passengers were traveling to their home district of Rajanpur to celebrate the upcoming Eid Al-Adha feast.
Initially, Commissioner Dera Ghazi Khan Dr Irshad Ahmed confirmed that 29 people, including women and children, had died in the incident. He said rescue officials reached the site soon after the accident, adding that dead bodies and the injured were being transferred to the DHQ Teaching Hospital DG Khan.
Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid expressed his sorrow over the deaths in the accident. He said the incident was nothing less than a “calamity” for people going back home for the upcoming Eidul Azha holidays.
“May God raise the dead to a higher level in Paradise [and] give the family the courage to bear the trauma,” he tweeted.
Chief Minister Buzdar also expressed grief over the loss of lives in the accident and extended condolences to the bereaved families. He said in a message on Twitter that the injured were being provided the best medical treatment and strict action would be taken against persons due to whose negligence the accident had taken place.
Opposition Leader in the National Assembly and PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif tweeted: “Deeply pained & heart-broken at the tragic loss of precious lives in a road accident in DG Khan. Can’t imagine the anguish the affected families should be going through. May Allah give them Sabr! They are in our thoughts & prayers. Inna Lillah e Wainna Elahi Rajioon!”