Non-availability of tickets forced Ghatkopar couple to travel non-AC

Thursday, 9 January 2014 - 11:09am IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA

They have been married for 50 years and even death could not separate them.

Ghatkopar residents Surendra Durlabhdas Shah, 67, and Dipika Shah, 65, died in the fire that engulfed Dehradun Express on Wednesday morning.

The couple was in the S3 compartment on seat numbers one and two when the bogie was engulfed in fire. The couple suffered asphyxiation injuries to the lungs.

It was sheer ill-luck that the Shahs booked non air-conditioned sleeper class to Baroda in Gujarat

“Every year, the couple go to Dakor, a religious shrine of the Vaishnavs, by bus from Baroda. They always travelled in AC train compartment. But there were no tickets available for AC coaches and the couple was keen to got fore their annual ritual of going to Dakor,” said Surendra’s elder brother, Navin.

Surendra, who ran an electronic appliances business in Masjid Bunder. had been afflicted by polio since birth. He was a victim of a hit-and-run accident 15 years ago and had a metal rod implant in his leg. “He was socially active and used to undertake voluntary and social work in Ghatkopar,” said Navin.

The couple has three sons. “We are waiting for the youngest son Kalpesh and his family to arrive from New Jersey and will then conduct the last rites,” said Navin.

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