New Delhi: A Pakistani army helicopter – carrying senior military officers, including the commander of their XII Corps, Lieutenant General Sarfraz Ali – crashed Monday night near Lasbela, Balochistan.
The crash Reportedly took place between Windar and the Sassi Punnu Shrine in Balochistan.
The Pakistani military said in a statement that the helicopter, which assisted in flood relief efforts in the area, went missing after losing contact with air traffic control.
A Pakistani army aviation helicopter that was in Lasbela, Balochistan during flooding lost contact with air traffic control. There were 6 people on board, including Commander 12 Corps who oversaw flood relief operations in Balochistan. Search in progress.DTF
— DG ISPR (@OfficialDGISPR) August 1, 2022
Sources in Pakistan told ThePrint that debris from the crashed helicopter was found after a search and rescue mission was launched, after the helicopter disappeared from radar.
While there are fears for casualties in the crash, sources said it was too early to find out why the crash happened.
News of the missing helicopter prompted Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and former Prime Minister Imran Khan to take to social media to express their grief and pray for those on board.
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DG Coast Guard, may have also been 2 majors on board
Six Pakistani military officials were reportedly on board the helicopter, including the corps commander.
The helicopter assisted in flood relief in Balochistan. There is speculation that even the Director General of the Pakistan Coast Guard, Brigadier General Amjad Hanif Satti, was on board the helicopter.
Reports also suggest that two Pakistan Army majors, in addition to the General and DG, were on board the helicopter at the time of the crash. However, confirmation is still awaited.
The Pakistani military has been involved in flood relief efforts in the Balochistan region after supernormal rains led to flooding, killing many people and disrupting life.
After the news of the crash broke, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said: “The disappearance of the army aviation helicopter from Balochistan is alarming. The whole nation prays to Allah Almighty for the safety, security and return of these sons of the land who came out to help the flood victims. If God wants it”.
آرمی ایوی ایشن کے ہیلی کاپٹر کی گمشدگی تشویشناک ہے۔ قوم اللہ تعالیٰ کے حضور سیلاب متاثرین کی مدد پر نکلنے والے وطن کے ان بیٹوں کی سلامتی، حفاظت اور بخیریت واپسی کے لئے دعا گو ہے۔ شاءاللہ
— Shehbaz Sharif (@CMShehbaz) August 1, 2022
Former Prime Minister Imran Khan said: “Disturbing news about the missing army aircraft helicopter and praying for all those on board”.
Disturbing news about missing army aviation helicopter and pray for all on board.
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) August 1, 2022
(Edited by Poulomi Banerjee)
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