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EditorialBus tragedy in Sindh

Bus tragedy in Sindh

The incident should have sparked nationwide fury and a debate on a running bus fire which claimed 18 lives on the Super Highway in Sindh’s Jamshoro district near the town of Nooriabad. Criminal negligence on the part of the bus operators and related public departments cannot be ignored in the burning of the Karachi-to-Khairpur Nathan Shah passenger bus. All the unfortunate passengers who lost their lives were flood victims who were said to belong to the same family and were returning to their villages for resettlement. According to the local police, 18 bodies were removed from the bus, including 15 children aged four to 14 years old. While 80 people were on the bus at the time of the accident, most of them were injured while jumping to save their lives. Sindh Transport Minister Sharjeel Memon has ordered an investigation into the accident and shown the determination of those responsible within three days, who must also be brought to justice. The motorway police have attributed the fire to a short circuit in the air conditioning system of the bus. According to the report, the provincial transport secretary will form a high-level committee for the investigation.

We will wait for the completion of the probe and the release of the report, but the question is why the passengers could not escape the burning bus through emergency exit doors, which are mandatory for every bus to have installed. It should be noted that the government has laid down safety codes for transport operators to prevent accidents on the roads in the country and to ensure their safety before hitting the road for a journey. Under the law, the vehicle is to be inspected and a certificate issued confirming that it is free from defects and fit for travel. There should be a quick and regular check of the vehicles on the highways. These safety valves are also a part of the system. However, their implementation seems to be missing in the homeland, and such carelessness has been behind most of the accidents in public transport, especially large vehicles, from Khyber to Karachi.

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