Federal Minister for Maritime Affairs, Ali Zaidi, has categorically rejected the report pointed to “overexposure” to “soybean dust” as the probable cause of deaths of over a dozen people in Karachi’s port areas.
While talking to private channel, Ali Zaidi said he will not accept the report which indicated the overspread to soybean from a cargo ship.
He detailed that it is the fourteenth ship which carried soybean to Karachi port while the off-loading process had not been initiated when the first person affected by the mysterious gas spread was taken to the hospital.
“We are trying to resolve this mystery since morning and I’ve also presided over a session today which was attended by concerned officials, members of KPT [Karachi Port Trust] administration and scientists. In the session, we have decided to remove the cargo ship from the berth.”
“The final report will decide on the genre of gas and particles which affected the people. A fact-finding committee headed by Commissioner Karachi has been constituted to investigate the incident.
“13 ships had docked in KPT earlier and it was the fourteenth ship, whereas, not a single person from 30-member crew of the ship and 400 persons who took part in the off-loading process have been affected. There is a distance of at least one kilometre between the cargo ship and the affected areas.”
He further said that the off-loading process from the said cargo ship was halted since yesterday’s night but people are still being taken to the hospitals. The minister once again said that the incident has no connection with KPT and he will not accept the report.
The mystery surrounding the deaths of over a dozen people due to what has been dubbed the leakage of toxic gas in Karachi’s Keamari area seems to be unravelling as the University of Karachi’s International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS) in a report has pointed to “overexposure” to “soybean dust” as the probable cause of the incident.