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Residents of Karachi’s Landhi up in arms over govt’s delayed response to child drowning in a drain

His body still hasn't been retrieved from the drain

SAMAA | - Posted: Feb 24, 2019 | Last Updated: 2 years ago
SAMAA |
Posted: Feb 24, 2019 | Last Updated: 2 years ago

The body of a child who fell in a storm water drain in the Landhi neighbourhood of Karachi has not been recovered after a full 24 hours.

When no official response was forthcoming, residents of the area and the boy’s family staged a protest.

The child, identified as eight-year-old Arif, drowned in a drain in Swati Mohalla. He was tending to his goats when he slipped and fell in the drain at around 5pm on Saturday, according to his father.

The government didn’t send anyone to help them so the residents of the area rented some shovels and dove into the drain to retrieve the body themselves. It still hasn’t been found. They have been digging out sludge and garbage from the drain.

Related: Three women killed after speeding car drives into a drain in Islamabad

Later, the local UC chairman, Jan Mohammad, also arrived at the scene. He was greeted by protesters who crowded around him and criticised his late appearance. Are our children not as important as other children, asked one demonstrator. We elected you to such an important office, you should then be there when we need you, he said.

Approximately 22 hours after the child drowned, machinery from DMC South arrived to help look for the body.

Residents of the area say the drain is dangerous. Arif isn’t the first child to lose his life here. Less than a year ago, another child also lost his life in this drain. It doesn't have a cover and the chances of a child slipping in and getting stuck in the sludge-infested waters are very high.

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