KARACHI  - Over 30 students and teachers were wounded in a tragic accident here on Northern Bypass on Saturday. Five of them are said to in critical condition. 

Witnesses and rescue officials said that the accident took place when a speeding dumper hit a coaster, carrying over 50 students and teachers of a private school, who were en route to a farmhouse in Gadap from their school in Surjani Town for a picnic. 

Later some more volunteers and police officials also joined them and participated in the rescue operation. 

The victims were initially shifted to a nearby private hospital from where most of them were discharged after the provision of first aid. However, at least five of them were later moved to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital and Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre as what the doctors said due to their critical condition. 

The critically injured students were Rida, Aliza, Hifza, Afshan and Shama.  

"Most of the students had internal injuries, especially on their faces and abdomen," said Dr Fahim of the Abbasi Hospital. "We have shifted two of them to intensive care unit." 

The students and teachers, wounded in the tragic accident, belonged to the Surjani Town from where they were going to a farmhouse for making a picnic. The injured students were aged between 12 and 16 years. The school administration said that they had made arrangements for the picnic following the end of the students' examinations.  

"There were two more coasters, carrying students and teachers, but both of these coasters had crossed the area before the accident took place," said the school administration. "We have no idea about how the accident took place, but it seems that it occurred when a speeding dumper hit the coaster."  

The students and teachers, travelling on three coasters, were on their way to Gadap Town from Surjani via Gulshan-e-Maymar and the accident took place near Abbas Kut on Northern Bypass.  

Extra contingents of the law enforcers reached the site. Although the coaster driver had managed to escape following the accident, the police arrested the dumper driver and impounded both- dumper and the coaster.  

The arrested driver Ameer is a resident of Korangi and was driving a truck loaded with sand. 

SHO Ali Akbar said that apparently the dumper, coming from the front, hit the coaster which suggested that the dumper’s driver was responsible for the accident. He said that few of the students went unconscious following the accident. “However, the rescuers retrieved them by breaking the coaster windows before shifting them to the hospital,” the officer said, and added that a total of 34 students and teachers were wounded but they had minor injuries and all the victims, including those who were shifted to Abbasi and Jinnah Hospital, were discharged after medical treatment. 

No case was registered as what the officer said that a case would be registered after initial investigations and recording of statements of the students, teachers and drivers.