Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Wife's last message to husband before Ethiopian Airlines crash

An Indian newly-wed who died in the Nairobi-bound Ethiopian Airlines plane crash had texted her husband she would call him on landing, local media reported Tuesday.

Shikha Garg, who was travelling to attend the annual assembly of the UN Environment Programme, had got married less than three months ago to Soumya Bhattacharya after dating for three years.

Bhattacharya was also supposed to fly with her to Nairobi but a last-minute change in plans meant he stayed back in New Delhi, the mass-circulation Times of India reported.

"I have boarded the flight and will call you once I land," Garg texted.

But before the husband could type a reply, his phone buzzed and a caller informed him about the plane crash, the newspaper said.

Bhattacharya had also bought a flight ticket for Nairobi but cancelled it because of an urgent meeting.

The couple, who lived in New Delhi, had instead planned a vacation after Garg's return from Nairobi.

On Monday Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj said she was unable to get in touch with Garg's family and appealed for help on Twitter.

Later she said she had managed to speak to Garg's bereaved family members as well as those of other three Indians who died in the crash.

Garg was a consultant with the Indian environment ministry and had taken part in the negotiations leading to the 2015 Paris climate accord.

The Nairobi-bound Boeing 737 MAX 8 crashed just minutes after an early-morning takeoff Sunday from Addis Ababa.

People holding passports from 35 countries were on board including some two dozen UN staff.
12/03/19 AFP/Khaleej Times

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