ISLAMABAD, Dec. 7 (UPI) -- A Pakistan International Airlines plane carrying 48 people from Chitral crashed near Islamabad on Wednesday, aviation authorities said.
Authorities said Flight PK-661, a turboprop ATR 42, crashed into a mountainside near Havelian, about 50 miles north of Islamabad, during the flight.
The cause of the crash is under investigation but one official said a pilot reported engine trouble. Witnesses said the plane simply dropped from the sky.
Investigators and officials said none of the 48 people on board could have survived.
"All of the bodies are burned beyond recognition," government official Taj Muhammad Khan said.
The plane took off from Chitral around 3:30 p.m. Wednesday. Communication with the plane was lost at around 4:30 p.m., shortly before it was scheduled to arrive in Islamabad, the Civil Aviation Authority said.
Among the dead is Junaid Jamshed, a Pakistani pop star turned evangelical Muslim cleric and fashion designer, who ran a successful chain of boutiques across Pakistan, The Guardian reported.
The area where the plane crashed is a remote mountainous region where there are no roads. Military planes and helicopters were called in to aid in the search.
The episode is the latest in a dismal history of aviation crashes for Pakistan.