Girl injured in Karachi plane crash dies of burn injuries

Pieces of fuselage and doll found at the crash site of a Pakistani airliner that plunged into a residential area of Karachi on May 22, 2020. Many passengers aboard were families with children returning home for Eid Al-Fitr holiday. (AN Photo/S.A. Babar)
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Updated 02 June 2020

Girl injured in Karachi plane crash dies of burn injuries

  • The 12-year-old girl was among four local residents injured when a passenger plane crashed near Karachi airport on May 22
  • Initial reports say the PIA jet crashed after an apparent engine failure

KARACHI, Pakistan: A Pakistani girl who was critically injured on the ground last month when a passenger plane went down in a crowded neighborhood of the port city of Karachi has died at a hospital, her relatives and a doctor said Tuesday.
The Airbus A320 crash killed 97 passengers and crew members; two passengers survived the crash.
The 12-year-old girl was among four local residents who were injured when the Airbus A320 crashed near the Karachi airport on May 22, slamming into the densely crowded neighborhood and setting off a huge fire.
She died on Monday from severe burn injuries, said Rubina Bashir, a doctor at a government hospital where the girl was treated. The remaining three injured local residents are still hospitalized.
Initial reports have said that the Pakistan International Airlines jet crashed after an apparent engine failure. Flight PK-8303 took off from the eastern city of Lahore and was trying to land at the Karachi airport when it crashed. At least 18 homes on the ground were damaged or destroyed.
The crash took place just days after Pakistan lifted some of the restrictions imposed over the coronavirus pandemic and resumed domestic flights ahead of the Eid Al-Fitr holiday, which marks the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.
Pakistan had been in a countrywide lockdown since mid-March because of the virus, and when flights resumed, every other seat was left vacant to promote social distancing, including on the doomed PIA flight. Authorities have reported over 76,398 cases of the virus, including 1,621 deaths.


Urdu comic book 'Little Master' to help Pakistani children fight COVID-19 misinformation

Updated 19 September 2020

Urdu comic book 'Little Master' to help Pakistani children fight COVID-19 misinformation

  • The book tells the story of a young boy from Karachi's Lyari, who is learning about the virus to help others
  • 'Little Master' is illustrated by Umair Najeeb Khan, the creator of Pakistan’s first superhero comic book series 'Paak-Legion'

RAWALPINDI: "Little Master," an Urdu-language comic book, is going to be released on Monday to guide Pakistani children how to stay safe amid the coronavirus pandemic and cope with COVID-19 misinformation.
Published by Mehrdar Art & Production (MAP), the book tells the story of Ahmed, a young boy from Karachi's Lyari area, who is trying to learn about the coronavirus to help keep others safe, regardless of their community background.
"Comics are a great way to tell a story positively and are really useful in countering misinformation,” Muhammad Faheem, documentary filmmaker and MAP founder, told Arab News on Saturday.

The cover of "Little Master," an Urdu-language comic book to help Pakistani children cope with COVID-19 misinformation. (Photo courtesy of Muhammad Faheem via AN)

The efforts have been funded by MAP itself and through government and private support. To illustrate "Little Master," Faheem asked for help Umair Najeeb Khan, the creator of Pakistan’s first superhero comic book series "Paak-Legion."
Thousands of copies of "Little Master" will be distributed at schools in underprivileged areas such as Lyari, where misinformation has led to blame games and community tensions that affected virus response. Some narratives even questioned the very existence of the virus and necessity to follow any precautions against it.

Umair Najeeb Khan is working on an illustration for the "Little Master" comic book in Islamabad on Sept. 19, 2020. (Photo courtesy of Umair Najeeb Khan via AN)

In May, Faheem rolled out "Hum Sab Saath, Corona ki Kilaaf" ("All of Us Together Against the Coronavirus"), a campaign through posters, social media and talks by community leaders to address the situation.
"It got to the point where relief efforts in these areas were being compromised because people were questioning who deserved help," Faheem said. "We needed to address not only the severity of what was going on but educate the citizens of these areas on what was real information to help combat the fake news and rising bigotry."
The comic book is a follow up to these efforts.
"When kids read our comics, we hope they will learn more about the pandemic and how it is a collective effort that we all have to join together, regardless of our backgrounds."