It was the last journey for young techies

Many were heading home to celebrate Deepawali
Last Updated 31 October 2013, 04:54 IST

For Priyanka (28), a software engineer living in Bangalore, the 30-kilometre distance from her bus and sweet home was short enough. 

But, she was not reaching home to spend time with her parents on Wednesday morning, as the bus she was travelling by went up in flames. 

Married and living with her husband in Bangalore, Priyanka called her parents before starting from the Silicon City on Tuesday night and her father Mahabubnagar district Special (SC-ST) Judge P Mohan Rao was waiting for her in the wee hours on Wednesday. 

Her parents heard about the accident from a passing vehicle on National Highway 44 and called Priyanka’s mobile phone, but found it dead. 

It was only at 10 am, when the charred bodies of the 45 passengers were shifted to the tent for identification that the judge identified her daughter’s remains by the golden bangles she wore. 

Takkela Suresh 24, a resident of Machilipatnam in Krishna district was returning from Bangalore after attending a successful interview in HP where he had bagged a job with Rs seven lakh per annum salary. 

He was also burnt alive in his sleep in the bus. “I received the sad news at 5.20 am,” said K Harish Rao, his father. Relatives found it hard to console 60-year-old Rakesh Gupta, a native of Faizabad, who had lost his 23-year-old son Prashanth in the accident.
 “We both were supposed to leave for Delhi on Thursday by AP Express. He went to Bangalore in search of a job,” Gupta said.
 Search for bodies

Sardar Ali, father of 24-year-old software engineer Farooq Ali, was unable to recognise his son’s remains. 

“Yesterday he was hired by IBM in Bangalore. He called me before boarding the bus. He was supposed to be sitting in seat D-5….Can anyone identify him?” Ali was seen asking the security personnel.

Asif Mohammad, also a software engineer, wanted his businessman-father Mohammad Abdul Khader to wait for him at Afzalgunj bus stand in Hyderabad. 

“I have not told his mother so far. She can’t take it,” an inconsolable Khader said. The officials collected the list of 33 passengers who had reserved their seats at the starting point in Bangalore, but the identities of passengers who boarded at different places remain unknown. 

Representatives of Jabbar Travels said the bus departed from the travel agency’s office around 10.30 pm before picking up passengers from different points in the City, including Mekhri Circle and Hebbal. Police said five passengers, besides the bus driver Firoz and cleaner Faiyaz, managed to jump out of the burning bus. 

(Published 30 October 2013, 19:48 IST)

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