Monday, January 16, 2023

Nepal plane crash: A victim had not told family about trip

Anil Kumar Rajbhar, 27, one of the Indians on the plane that crashed near Pokhara’s new airport on Sunday, had left for Nepal without telling his family, a friend in his native Ghazipur district in Uttar Pradesh said on Monday.

“Anil went to Nepal without informing his family or friends. I too was scheduled to go with Anil but, somehow, could not make it,” the friend said.

“I would have gone with him had he taken the road route to Nepal, and opted for a four-wheeler. One of his (other) friends too was to accompany him but could not make it.”

Anil’s mother was crying inconsolably.

Anil had gone to Nepal with four others from Ghazipur — Abhisekh Kushwaha, 25, Bishal Sharma, 22, and Sonu Jaiswal, 35. They planned to take part in paragliding in Pokhara. The fifth Indian on the plane, Sanjaya Jaiswal, too is believed to be from Uttar Pradesh. All five are feared dead.

Abhishek ran a Jan Seva Kendra — centres that help citizens access government e-services — that he had opened three years ago.

“He was a practical person and registered a good growth in a short time,” said the owner of the shop from where Abhishek ran the centre in Ghazipur.

A video apparently shot by one of the five Indians on the aircraft suggests the group was upbeat moments before the crash.

A man is heard expressing his enjoyment, saying: “Wah beta, wah, mauj kar dee.”

Seconds later, there is commotion, followed by blurred footage, including that of a fire. The camera seems to have kept rolling briefly even after the crash.

The authenticity of the video could not be independently verified.

A family in Kerala, already mourning the death of an elderly member, is also grieving for three Nepali friends who died in the crash two days after visiting their home in Anicadu, Pathanamthitta, to attend the funeral.

Raju, Rabin and Anil had arrived to pay their respects to Mathew Philip, an evangelical Christian missionary with whom they were emotionally connected since his missionary days in Nepal.

16/01/23  Ghazipur (Uttar Pradesh)/Telegraph

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