KARACHI, Jan 3: A 64-year-old passenger of a cab was killed when a drill tripod system collapsed and fell on the vehicle on Saturday on Sharea Faisal near the Faisal base, police and witnesses said.

They said the drill tripod system, installed for drilling holes for pillars of an overhead bridge, collapsed at around 10.30am and fell on a taxi (JN-3279).

The witnesses said the passenger in the front seat was killed instantly and the taxi driver was injured. They said one of the poles of the tripod crushed the front of the taxi, trapping the passenger and the driver inside.

The witnesses said the passenger in the front seat of the taxi received a fatal injury in the head.

The dead and the injured were taken to the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre, where the deceased was identified as Syed Ansar Hussain Zaidi, son of Syed Banday Hussain Zaidi, and Jahanzeb, son of Tameez Khan. Both victims were residents of Model Colony.

Sources at the hospital’s medico-legal section told Dawn that both the deceased and the injured received head injuries. They said the deceased’s head and jaw were smashed in the incident.

Mr Zaidi’ family members told Dawn at the JPMC that the deceased was the general secretary of the Shia Ulema Welfare Trust.

They said the victim used to call the taxi driver, father of three, whenever he had to go somewhere. They added that the deceased was on his way to Saddar.

The incident caused a severe traffic jam on one of the city’s major arteries as thousands of vehicles, queued bumper-to-bumper, crawled for over two hours.

The area SHO, Inspector Chaudhry Amir, told Dawn that a case (FIR 8/2009) was registered against the city government’s contractor under Sections 319 (qatl-i-khata committed by negligence), 337-A (1) (act with the intention of causing hurt), 337-H (2)(endangering human life or the personal safety of others by a rash or negligent act), and 427 (mischief causing damage to the amount of Rs50 of above) on the complaint of the deceased’s son, Syed Kamal Hussain Shah.

The police said the city government had given the contract for the construction of the bridge at the Shah Faisal base to a contractor. They said the contractor had not taken the precautionary measures while installing the drill tripod at the site.

The police said that one of the poles of the tripod was not properly anchored. They said that the ropes or chains were not tied to the tripod’s poles for its firm anchoring.

Meanwhile, sources said the CDGK had contacted the victims’ families to offer them compensation.

A police officer at the Sharea Faisal police station said no one was named in the FIR. However, they said, the arrest of the people responsible was likely in case the victims’ families refused to accept compensation.

Meanwhile, the construction workers at the Faisal base bridge re-erected the drill tripod some four hours after the incident and continued drilling for the pillar.

Shot dead

A 35-year-old man was shot dead in his Khokhrapar home.

The police said Anver Khan, son of Mohammed Khan Mallah, was killed by three unknown culprits in the small hours of Saturday.

They said the victim’s family were in their hometown in Larkana and the victim was alone at home.

The body was shifted to the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre for an autopsy.

Sources at the hospital’s medico-legal section told Dawn that the victim received a single, but fatal, bullet wound in his back chest.

The police said the victim’s 10-year-old maternal nephew was also living with him, but he was sleeping at a neighbour’s house on the night of the incident.

The police said they had also seized a bottle of liquor from the spot.

They said that police registered a case (FIR 3/2009) under sections 302 (murder) and 34 (common intention) against the unknown culprits on the complaint of the victim’s paternal uncle Mohammed Ibrahim.

The police said that the incident seemed motivated by a personal enmity.

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