Kerala nurse dies in Israel’s rocket attack; uncertainty prevails to get mortal remains

A 31-year-old nurse from Kerala, Soumya Santosh died in a tragic incident in Israel’s Ashkelon after Palestinian militants from Gaza launched a rocket that hit her home on May 11.

The incident took place on Tuesday afternoon when Soumya was on a video call with her husband Santosh. “She was talking to me about the tense atmosphere in the city and the details of the war-like situation going on in the area,” Santosh said, as quoted by The News Minute.

While on video call, Santosh heard a huge sound on the other end, her phone was still connected, but nothing was clear as the phone seems to have fallen down. “I uttered “hello, hello” over the phone, but there was no response from the other side. After a minute and a half, I could hear the noise of some people in the background on the phone call as it was still connected,” Santhosh said.

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Sensing danger, Santhosh immediately alerted his family members, who helped him get in touch with Soumya’s friends in Ashkelon and then came to know of her tragic demise. 

The tragedy happened as Soumya was planning her return to Kerala, ending years of toil in the Israeli city, for a better life back home.

Soumya’s death has come as a shock to a lot of people, family, friends even her neighbours as she was loved by many.

Her son Adorn is still not ready to cope with the reality of the situation and is ‘still awaiting her call’, Santosh said.

Sowmya hails from Kerala’s Idukki district and was employed as a caregiver attending to an 80 year old woman in a house at the southern Israeli coastal city of Ashkelon.

She had moved to Israel about eight years ago to support her family financially, especially her nine-year-old son.

Israel’s official ambassador to India, Ron Malka tweeted his condolences to Soumya Santosh’s family.

https://twitter.com/DrRonMalka/status/1392178684363034626

The Kerala CMO on Wednesday tweeted that the state government was in touch with the Indian Embassy in Israel to ensure that Soumya’s mortal remains are brought back to Kerala and handed over to her family as soon as possible.

https://twitter.com/IsraelinIndia/status/1392390586208985090

However, there are concerns of the transportation of the body as the Tel Aviv airport in Israel was shut on Tuesday after the rocket strike by the militant Hamas group from the Gaza strip.

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