16 drown as boat capsizes off Thatta

THATTA: At least 16 people including women and children died when a boat capsized near Thatta, Newsone reported.

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Deputy Commissioner (DC) Thatta Nasir Baig said the boat was carrying 60-70 passengers. At least 20 bodies have been recovered, according to officials at the Mirpur Sakro Taluqa Hospital.

Most of the passengers were pilgrims who were going to attend an event at the shrine of a Sufi saint.

Around 80 pilgrims, including women and children, were on their way to a shrine ‘mela’ (fair) when their boat capsized in the open sea, Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Thatta Haseeb Afzal said, adding that the boat was overloaded with passengers.

The Thatta DC said 15-20 people were rescued and admitted to the hospital in an unconscious state.

There are conflicting reports on how the accident happened, how many boats were involved, and where it took place.

Pakistan Navy teams left for the site of the incident for a rescue operation on Wednesday evening, a Navy spokesperson said, adding that rescue boats were also dispatched.