MUZAFFARABAD: A grade five girl student drowned after she fell into the Neelum River from a dangerous footbridge on Monday, residents said.

Afsana Butt was on her way to school when she lost balance due to hoarfrost and fell into the icy river that immediately swept her away, they said.

The footbridge connects Reshna village with Chaangan village in the upper belt of Neelum valley and visuals shared by villagers on social media showed it was without a proper railing.

Villagers said their men, women and schoolchildren used to walk through the bridge at the peril of their lives.

“Why doesn’t the people at helm realise such problems? For how long we have to see such tragedies?” fumed one villager in one of the video clips.

Published in Dawn, January 28th, 2020