ABBOTTABAD: All the 47 persons on board were killed when a Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight carrying 42 passengers and five crew members from Chitral to Islamabad crashed on Wednesday near Havelian in the Abbottabad district, police and the airline authorities said.

Beside others, Junaid Jamshed, a well-known Pakistani pop star-turned-Muslim preacher, his wife Nahya, Deputy Commissioner Chitral Osama Ahmad Warraich, his wife and one-year-old daughter were on board the crashed aircraft.

Locals, who were the first to reach the crash site, told horrific details of the plane crashing into the hills and how the pilot saved the local population from disaster.

An eyewitness told Geo News that the plane was swinging left, right over the hills and then the pilot courageously saved the local population by flying away the plane from us and hit a mountain.

“Soon after we heard a big explosion and the plane caught fire, everyone ran towards the site. We tried to extinguish the fire on our own.”

Another eyewitness shared that it was about 4:30 – 4:45 pm when we saw an ‘out of control’ plane coming towards us then it hit the hill there. Then there was a big boom and the plane exploded into pieces with dark clouds coming out.

Everyone from the village ran rushed for the rescue, he added.