LAHORE: Heartrending moments were seen when a drowning nine-year-old boy was rescued from the Lahore canal near Abdul Sattar Edhi Road on Wednesday afternoon.

The child was brought to safety by passersby who shouted “he is breathing” as he and some other people carried him from the canal. They put the boy on the footpath and pressed hard his chest to get the water out from his lungs. Later, the boy was shifted to nearby Farooq Hospital where his condition was stated to be stable.

“Thanks God, the child is safe and perfect. He is mentally retarded. He was dropped at the hospital by some passersby. We don’t know his name and we don’t have his address,” a medical officer at Farooq Hospital told The Nation.

According to hospital staff, the deputy medical superintendent himself handed over the child to the Chuhng police station when he was in stable condition. It was not clear yet whether the boy fell into the canal accidentally or someone pushed him into the canal.

A young passerby jumped into the canal as he witnessed the child’s head in the canal water. “I thought he was struggling to come out of waters. So, I immediately threw myself into the canal to save the child,” said 26-year-old Naeem Khan.

The young man and his two friends were walking alongside the canal as they noticed the boy was struggling to swim. “I thought the boy was not taking a bath in the cold water. But in fact, he was drowning. I am happy because he is safe and sound,” Khan said.

In July, Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif named the newly-constructed highway from Motorway to Khayaban-e-Jinnah after prominent social worker Abdul Sattar Edhi. (Photos by Reporter)