A Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight on its way from Chitral to Islamabad on Wednesday has reportedly crashed near Havelian in Abbottabad. The PIA flight PK-661 departed from Chitral at 3:30 pm local time, and was supposed to reach Islamabad’s Benazir Bhutto International Airport at 4:40 pm. The plane disappeared from the air control radar soon after the take-off.
Junaid Jamshed and his family were among 47 onboard
There were 47 people on board the plane, including five crew members. The list of passengers included popular singer Junaid Jamshed and his family. According to Dawn News, the District Police Officer Abbottabad confirmed reports of an ATR plane crashing near Havelian. Eyewitnesses told media that they saw a plane crashing in a hilly area near the Ordinance Factory. Huge plumes of smoke could be seen rising from the site of the crash.
— Talha ?? (@beaurdiful) December 7, 2016
List of passengers on board PK-661
Here’s the complete list of passengers on board the plane:
— Khunsha Agha Khan (@KhunshaAghaKhan) December 7, 2016
Pakistani military’s media wing ISPR said helicopters and army troops had been sent to the accident site for rescue efforts. PIA spokesman Daniyal Gilani had earlier tweeted that the PIA flight PK-661 had lost contact, and all resources had been mobilized to locate the aircraft. International aviation watchdog Aviation Herald said the ATR plane crashed due to engine problems.
A PIA aircraft has lost contact with control tower. Plz see statement below. pic.twitter.com/AVcNXFL6E2
— Danyal Gilani (@Danyal_Gilani) December 7, 2016
PIA emergency contact numbers
Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Alli Khan have directed the relevant departments to urgently launch rescue efforts and help the provincial government in every possible way. The PIA has activated its emergency response center that can be accessed at following numbers: 0092-21-99044890, 0092-21-99044376 and 0092-21-99044394.
May the departed souls rest in peace!
Four years ago, a passenger plane had crashed near Islamabad just before landing during a thunderstorm. The Bhoja Air flight B-213 was torn into pieces – killing all 127 on board – on the outskirts of Islamabad. Pakistan’s last major air crash occurred in 2015 when a military helicopter crashed in a remote valley, killing eight people including diplomats from Norway, Indonesia, and the Philippines.