The last rites of G Ishwaraya at the Swargadham crematorium in Alwal of Secunderabad were attended by people who never met her or her parents. They came from different walks of life, including political leaders from TDP, TRS and Congress, and also her neighbours in Golnaka of Alwal, friends and a few parents who had children of her age besides the student community of the Vijnanjyoti Institute. Her smiling face on the photo frame kept near the pyre lit by her crestfallen father reminded everyone how fate has cruelly ended a bright life.
The 19-year-old Ishwaraya drowned in the gushing waters of river Beas in Mandi district of Himachal Pradesh. Her body arrived here on the midnight of Monday along with the listless bodies of her friends Rambabu,Vijetha and Lakshmi Gayatri in wooden coffins.
The eerie silence at the tarmac resonated with the shrill cries of parents who have been controlling their tears all the while. The waiting ambulances carried their boxes with bodies of budding software engineers to their homes across the state. With the news of two more bodies being fished out the Beas river waters, the parents of the remaining 17 students lost hopes of seeing their wards alive.
But the parents of Muppidi Kiran Kumar of Khammam, one of the those missing, are still hopeful. “My son is a good swimmer and is reported to have been swept by the strong current only after he saved four lives,” said father Venkataramana hoping against hope.
On Tuesday an official press release from the Telagnana government said that the body of Debashish Bose of Central Excise Colony here will be reaching by Tuesday night along with the parents of some of the students.
“It is time to reconcile that there is little hope of survival after 48 hours,” said a Telugu Desam Party functionary coordinating efforts at the Shamshabad airport. The special Air Costa flight arriving from Chandigarh is arranged by AP government which brought back the dead bodies on Monday night. Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu has also announced an ex-gratia payment of Rs5 lakh to the families of for each the dead
Telangana mulls legal action
Telangana home minister Nayini Narsimha Reddy on Tuesday said that his government is planning to take legal action against the authorities associated with the hydroelectric power plant in Mandi district of Himachal Pradesh.
Narsimha Reddy said that state government will initiate legal action against the authorities of Larji Hydropower Project for criminal negligence leading to the loss of innocent lives. Legal action will also be launched against the college authorities for taking students for a picnic labelling it as an industrial training tour.
He said the families feel that the search should be carried out "deep".
"Families argue that the search should be carried out deep. Collector and the administration people say it is not easy to carry deep search," Reddy said.
"Dam water was released without caution or siren.
Children got into the river when the water was less. The water increased suddenly and washed them away," he said.
Industrial tours banned
The Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University, the apex body of all public and private engineering colleges in the state, has banned Industrial tours for engineering students enrolled with immediate effect.