RAWALPINDI: Two years since the fatal aircraft crash just off the runway of Jinnah International Airport in Karachi, a final report to determine responsibility has still not been released.

On May 22, 2020, Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight PK-8303 from Lahore crashed into a populated area in Karachi, claiming 97 lives and leaving just two survivors.

“No official report of the ill-fated aircraft has so far been released,” Arshad Ali Qureshi, elder brother of Zubair Qureshi, one of the survivors, told Dawn.

He said he could still recall the moments when he returned home after offering Friday prayers and learnt that the airplane in which his brother was travelling had crashed.

Minister assures victims’ families, friends report will be made available soon

“How can I forget the time when I was rushing from the site of the aircraft crash to hospitals; in fact any place where I could find my brother,” Arshad Ali said.

Talking to Dawn, Zubair Qureshi, who survived the disaster, said: “Whenever I remember those moments, I thank God.”

Meanwhile, the Aviation Division, in a press release on Sunday, said Aviation Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique had extended his condolences and sympathies to the aggrieved families and friends of the victims and assured them that a final report would be made available at the earliest.

The press release said this interim statement was issued in accordance with the requirements of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Annex-13 to provide an overview of the progress of safety investigation.

In addition to exchange of relevant documents, member state accredited representatives (ACCREPs) and their technical advisers have generated various contribution reports.

The Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) team has also visited Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority and PIA stations both in Lahore and Karachi to gather evidence.

The Aviation Division said analysis of the gathered information in combination with contribution reports was under progress at the AAIB for formulation of conclusions and safety recommendations.

The draft final report is presently under process and likely to be completed soon, it said.

According to the PIA spokesperson, the air crash investigation was ordered immediately by the federal government and a team constituted, which released a preliminary report publicly after a month of the accident.

He said despite restrictions due to Covid-19 and related challenges the AAIB team collected all required evidence and was presently working on a draft final report.

In accordance with the ICAO requirements, a second interim statement has been issued by AAIB Pakistan and was available publicly on the Aviation Division website.

Published in Dawn, May 23rd, 2022

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