QUETTA: Six army personnel, including two pilots, embraced martyrdom in the Khost area of Harnai district on Sunday night when a military helicopter cra­shed during a mission, bringing back memories of last month’s tragedy that had struck during flood relief operations in Balochistan.

The martyred officials are Major Khurram Shahzad, Major Mohammad Muneeb Afzal, Subedar Abdul Wahid, Naik Jalil, Sepoy Mohammad Imran and Sepoy Shoaib. Senior military and civil officers offered their funeral prayers at Quetta Garrison on Monday before the coffins of the shuhada were dispatched to their native towns, where they will be buried with full military honours, according to the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR).

Tributes and condolence messages poured in as soon as the news of martyrdom was confirmed by the ISPR, with President Arif Alvi stating that the nation would remain indebted to those who laid down their lives in service to the motherland.

In early August, six servicemen, including Quetta corps commander and senior army officers, were martyred during flood relief operations in Lasbela district of Balochistan.

Top civil, military officials attend funeral in Quetta, martyrs to be buried with full military honours

About the Harnai incident, the ISPR stated: “All the personnel on board including two pilots have embraced shahadat as a result of helicopter crash.”

According to the military’s statement, Maj Khur­ram was a resident of Attock, married, with a daughter; Maj Muneeb was a Rawalpindi resident, married, with two sons; Subedar Abdul Wahid hailed from Karak’s Sabirabad village, married, with four children; Naik Jalil (crew) belonged to Kharian, married, with two sons; Sepoy Imran was a resident of Makhdoompur area of Khanewal, married, with three children; and Sepoy Shoaib hailed from the Jhand tehsil of Attock, married, with a son.

While paying tribute to the officials of Pakistan Army who laid down their lives in the line of duty, President Alvi prayed for the departed souls and for the grant of patience to their families.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif expressing deep grief and sorrow over the martyrdom said the entire nation was grieved over the loss of lives. He prayed for the departed souls to rest in peace and for the grant of patience to the bereaved families.

Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, acting governor of Balochistan Mir Jan Mohammad Khan Jamali, Chief Minister Mir Abdul Qudoos Bizenjo, Adviser to the CM on Home and Tribal Affairs Ziaullah Langove, Minister for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb also expressed their deep grief and said the sacrifices of armed forces were highly commendable and unforgettable. They said the martyred troops were the real heroes and the entire nation saluted their courage and sacrifices.

Published in Dawn, September 27th, 2022

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