MUZAFFARABAD: A man and his minor son from Karachi drowned while another two tourists from Peshawar were killed in a road accident in Neelum valley of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) on Tuesday, an official said.

Akhtar Ayub, district disaster management officer in the valley’s headquarters Athmuqam, told Dawn by telephone that the first incident occurred at about 1:30pm in Sharda, where a three-member family from Gulshan Kaniz Fatima neighbourhood of Karachi East, comprising Talib Fahim, 40, his spouse and six-year-old son Musa, had made a brief stopover at a rest house along Neelum River, he said.

Mr Ayub said as the minor boy went close to the riverbank and stood up on a wet slippery rock, he lost balance and fell into the icy water.

On seeing this, the father jumped into the river to rescue him but both were swept away,he added.

He said search for the bodies remained unsuccessful till sunsetand would resume on Wednesday.

In the other incident in the afternoon, two persons died and another three were critically injured after their vehicle met with an accident in Jagran area in the lower belt of Neelum valley, Mr Ayub said.

According to him, a group of 10 tourists from Peshawar was driving in three jeeps through a link road in Jagran area.

As the brakes of one of the jeeps failed, the man at the wheel turned it towards the roadside mountain to save it from plunging hundreds of feet down into a ravine on the opposite side, Mr Ayub said.

However, due to the sudden strike [with the mountain] two persons who were standing inside the vehicle to enjoy the scenery fell onto the road and were crushed to death by the overturned vehicle, he added.

The bodies and the injured were dispatched to Muzaffarabad, he said.

Published in Dawn, August 4th, 2021

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