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Two Killed As Plane Spraying Anti-Locust Pesticide Crashes

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Two people lost their lives after their pesticide-spraying aircraft crashed in Cholistan’s Sadiqabad tehsil on Sunday.

According to a report in Dawn, the aircraft was spraying pesticides meant to eliminate locusts. The deceased were identified as the pilot, Shoaib Malik, and the aircraft engineer, Fawad Butt. Both the deceased belonged to the Federal Plant Protection Department.

The district administration told media that both died on impact and their bodies were shifted to Sheikh Zayed Hospital in Rahim Yar Khan. An investigation into the incident has revealed that the plane crashed due to a technical fault.

The district administration has said that the plane was spraying pesticide in the area to counter a wave of locust attacks which began in December 2019.

The locust problem had begun in early 2019, when widespread rainfall in Balochistan had created ecological conditions conducive to a rapid increase in the number of locusts.

In November 2019, it had been reported that the reason why the locust population could not be curtailed was because the Directorate of Locusts Control had been stocking expired pesticide.

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