21 killed as trains collide in Pakistan

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RAHIM YAR KHAN: At least 21 passengers died and 89 were injured when a passenger train collided with a freight train near Rahim Yar Khan on Thursday.

The death toll is feared to go up as some of those injured in the crash are in critical condition.

Akbar Express was heading to Lahore from Quetta when it hit a waiting freight train at the Walhar Railway Station in Sadiqabad Tehsil of Punjab.

Umar Salamant, district police officer of Rahim Yar Khan, said the deceased include one woman and nine men, while the injured include nine women and 11 children.

The injured have been shifted to nearby hospitals of Sadiqabad and Rahim Yar Khan for treatment where an emergency has been declared.

A child and a man have been rescued from the train.

Rescue operation is underway and hydraulic cutters have been called at the site to retrieve dead bodies. A control room and helpline has established.

According to officials, the accident was caused by the passenger train which instead of running on the mainline went on the wrong track.

Railways Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed has expressed deep grief and sorrow over the loss of precious lives in the accident.