18 children, six women among dead
Peshawar—Intermittent heavy rains that have been gripping the Khyber Agency (KA) for the last one week, wreaked havoc in a remote village where the gushing waters swept away a passenger vehicle carrying a wedding party leaving at least 26 people including 18 children dead on Saturday wee hours thus taking the death toll to almost hundred in Khyber Pukhtunkhwa in the month of July or the current Monsoon season.
The local sources said the driver of the ill-fated vehicle ran away seeing the flood leaving the Pickup at the mercy of angry waters that pushed it to a ravine. The condition of the three other victims who have been rushed to a local hospital has been described as precarious.
Reports reaching here and as confirmed by the Political administration said a Pickup truck carrying a wedding party of 29 people that included children and women in the mountainous region when reached near Sra Shagga area of Zakha Khel village, was hit by flash flood waters and rolled down to a ravine Saturday early morning.
Since the accident occurred in a rough hilly terrain, the rescuers had to face great difficulty in retrieving the victims and the rescue operation was completed after hours. The victims were shifted to nearby hospital where the doctors pronounced 26 people dead. They include 18 children and six women and two males. Three more people were admitted for treatment and their condition was stated to be precarious.
The officials of the political administration while talking to Pakistan Observer confirmed the tragic incident saying 26 people were killed and the 18 dead children were of different ages up to 12 years. Some reports say the driver of the overloaded Datsun Pickup wherein 29 people bundled up after seeing the gushing waters towards them jumped from the vehicle leaving it to the mercy of the floods pushed the vehicle to a gorge.
It may be recalled that the torrential rains causing floods in parts of the Khyber Pukhtunkhwa in the current season have so for eaten up 96 people besides destroying property and causing major damages to government installations including communication infrastructure. Torrential rains causing heavy floods in parts of Chitral District in the evening of July three had swept away more than three dozen people including women and children and seriously injured over fifty others. Those killed included large number of Namazis as the angry waters had also swept away a mosque where the Tarahwi prayers were in progress.
The Governor Khyber Pukhtunkhwa Iqbal Zafar Jhagra has expressed his sense of shock and sorrow over the killing of precious lives by the floodwaters in the Khyber agency and directed the Political administration to personally supervise the rescue and rehabilitation activities.
While expressing deep felt sympathies with the effected families , the Governor also ordered the concerned quarters to conduct inquiry in order to trace those responsible for the gory incident.