Ghazipur: A video apparently shot by one of the five Indian passengers on board the aircraft that plunged into a gorge in Nepal’s Pokhara on Sunday captures the horrific moments of the crash that killed at least 68 people.
The one-minute clip opens with a view of passengers sitting inside the plane and then focuses on the Pokhara town below.
The mood of the group filming the video at that point is upbeat. One person is heard saying, “waah betaa waah mauj kar dee”.
Moments later there is commotion, and then there is blurred footage, including that of a fire. Apparently the camera kept running for some moments after the crash.
The contents of this video are extremely graphic. Viewers’ discretion is strongly advised.
PTI could not independently verify the authenticity of the video.
Yeti Airlines’ 9N-ANC ATR-72 aircraft took off from Kathmandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport at 10:33 am on Sunday and crashed on the bank of the Seti River between the old airport and the new airport in Pokhara, minutes before landing, according to the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal.
The bodies of 68 people, including five Indians, have been recovered, officials said, in one of Nepal’s worst aviation tragedies. The remaining four passengers are also feared dead but the bodies are yet to be recovered.
The five Indians, all reportedly from Uttar Pradesh, have been identified as Abhisekh Kushwaha, 25, Vishal Sharma, 22, Anil Kumar Rajbhar, 27, Sonu Jaiswal, 35, and Sanjaya Jaiswal.
Meanwhile, a subdued atmosphere prevailed at the residences of the four of the deceased who hailed from UP’s Ghazipur.
Rajbhar’s mother was crying and inconsolable.
“Anil went to Nepal without informing anyone. Anil’s friend was also to accompany him to Nepal, but due to some work, he could not make it. I was also scheduled to go with Anil. But, somehow, I could not make it to the trip. He went without informing his family members and friends. I would have gone with him, if he had taken the road route to Nepal, and had opted for a four-wheeler to go there,” a friend of Anil at the deceased’s native village said.
People also spoke about the social nature of Kushwaha.
“Abhishek Kushwaha was running the ‘Jan Seva Kendra’ for the last three years. He was a practical person and in less time he registered a good growth. He never said ‘no’ to anyone for work if they were finding it difficult to make the payment. We did not know that he was going to Nepal, and came to know after the accident,” said the owner of a shop from where Kushwaha ran the Jan Seva Kendra.
Villagers said the four were to return to Ghazipur on Tuesday after paragliding in the popular tourist hub of Pokhara.
Rajan Maurya, who is a friend of the four deceased passengers, told reporters, “They were my best of friends and they had gone to Nepal. They were sending the videos from there.”
Deceased passenger Vishal Sharma’s friend Mukesh Kashyap said, “Vishal Sharma was my friend, and used to do the work of finance in a company. Vishal was unmarried and he had gone to Nepal 3-4 days ago. The Facebook live was an authentic one, and Sonu Jaiswal was seen in the post. My last word to him was ‘enjoy’ the tour”.