Model Zara Abid allegedly among dead

A top Pakistani model is feared to be among the 97 people killed on a doomed passenger jet which crashed into a housing estate yesterday.

Zara Abid, who has more than 80,000 Instagram followers, is believed to have been on the Pakistan International Airlines flight which plunged into homes near Karachi.

Civil aviation officials have said that at least two people have been pulled from the twisted wreckage alive – although it is unclear if Ms Abid was among the reported survivors.

It has been reported that Ms Abid’s parents are desperately trying to find out what happened to their daughter.

Tributes have flooded social media praising the “wonderful and hardworking” star despite there being no official confirmation that the model is among the dead.

Designer Khadijah Shah tweeted: “The fashion Industry lost Zara Abid in the plane crash today.

“She was a wonderful girl, hardworking and professional.

“I was in awe of the energy and the dynamism in her photographs – May her soul RIP – so many ppl lost their loved ones today, may Allah have mercy on us all.”

Actor Aiman Khan wrote: “Zara you were a sweetheart!!! We will miss you may Allah give you higher place in jannah.”

Another user posted: “Zara Abid the famous model and actress. One of the biggest loss this year [sic]. Her family has confirmed that she has not survived the PIA crash.”

Some unverified tweets claimed Ms Abid’s brother had rushed to the scene of the crash to look for her.

Actor Frieha Altaf appeared to confirm the model was on the flight, writing: “PIA plane crash. Our fashion model Zara Abid on the list of passengers.

“I’m devastated. #allahkhair #piaplanecrash.”

The Pakistan International Airlines jet, which was on its final approach to Jinnah International Airport in Karachi, plunged into homes in the Model Colony neighbourhood.

According to witnesses, the aircraft circled the airport two or three times before plummeting into the residential area and destroying several buildings at 2.45pm local time yesterday.

The pilot made one aborted landing attempt before reporting a technical problem, according to local media reports.

Moments before the crash, the desperate pilot contacted air traffic control saying: “We have lost two engines. Mayday, mayday, mayday. It’s serious.”

One senior civil aviation official said it appeared the plane had been unable to lower its wheels for landing due to a technical fault, but it was too early to determine the cause.


Pictures emerging from the scene show bodies being carried away from the wreckage by emergency workers.

And video has been posted online showing the jet plummeting towards the ground.

The civil aviation authority said eight staff and 99 passengers were on the Airbus A320.

Pictures from near the scene show clouds of thick black smoke billowing into the air above the residential area.

“The last we heard from the pilot was that he has some technical problem. It is a very tragic incident,” PIA spokesman Abdullah H Khan said.

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan tweeted: “Shocked & saddened by the PIA crash … Immediate inquiry will be instituted.

“Prayers & condolences go to families of the deceased.”

The jet crashed near the southern port city of Karachi, Abdul Sattar Kokhar, spokesman for the civil aviation authority, confirmed.

Arriving from the eastern city of Lahore, the plane appeared to attempt to land two or three times before crashing, witnesses said.

Model Colony, a residential area on the edge of the airport, is a poor area which is heavily congested.

The flight from the northeastern city of Lahore to Karachi typically takes an hour and a half to travel.

This article originally appeared in The Sun and has been reproduced with permission

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