Civilian dead in Budgam crash only male member in family of four
Srinagar, Feb 28: Little did he know that his morning stroll to the nearby fields for bantering with his friends would be his last.
But as fate would have it, Kifayat Ahmad Ganaie, 20, of Garend Kalan in Budgam district, literally came in the line of fire Wednesday morning after an IAF Mi17 chopper, which had developed some technical snag, crashed right on him.
As per his friends and family, at around 9, Kifayat went out for the stroll with his friends as it was a valley-wide strike on the day.“We were 10 friends there. One among us was Kifayat. Suddenly there were three loud bangs and all of us started running,” said Fayaz Ahmad, one of Kifayat’s friends.
“Nine of us managed to escape but Kifayat was unable to make his way out as he slipped on the marshy land and within no time the burning aircraft fell on him, killing him instantly,” Fayaz said.
Another friend who was with Kifayat said: “With the loud burst we hurriedly ran, but Kifayat had a weak heart, he fainted. After sometimes, I saw his burnt body.”
Kifayat, a daily-wage labourer, was the only earning hand in the family comprising of his mother Zamrooda and two sisters, one of whom is mentally challenged.
The kids were raised by Zamrooda alone as they had lost their father during their childhood.“He got a call from some of his friend and told me that he is going out for a stroll,” said Zamrooda. “In a few moments, I heard a loud bang, I thought that India had started bombarding us, war had begun and soon we all will be killed.”
“I barely knew that my only support was blazed to ashes,” she lamented.
She, Zamrooda said, saw people running and shouting that “a bomb has fallen”.“I heard them saying that my son was also there and he had not come back. My tongue parched and I could hear my heart beating loudly,” she recalled.
Zamrooda tried to call his son continuously but all in vain as his phone was switched off. Her apprehensions came true when villagers were saying Kifayat was caught under the ill-fated aircraft.
Apart from Kifayat, six IAF personnel, who were aboard the chopper, died in the incident, which happened simultaneous to Pakistan aircrafts entering Indian space and then shooting down one of the IAF jets and capturing the pilot on their way back.
Rs. 4 lakh relief given to victim family
Budgam, Feb 28: Deputy Commissioner Budgam Dr. Syed Sehrish Asgar today visited family of 20 year old Kifayat Hussain Ganai son of Mohammad Ramzan Ganai, who died in an IAF Mi 17 helicopter crash at village Gariend Kalan in district Budgam on Wednesday and handed over relief cheques of Rs. 4 lakh to them. The DC was accompanied by ADC Budgam, Khurshid Ahmad Shah, Tehsildar Budgam Nusrat and officials from various other departments. The DC handed over cheques of Rs. 2 lakh each to Bashir Ahmad Ganai and Afroza, brother and sister of Kifayat as an immediate ex graitia relief under SDRF to the victim family. The DC met family members, sympathized with them over the loss and assured them that District Administration will make all efforts for providing all possible help to the family. She said that she will also write to the IAF to help the victim family. kifayat died when an IAF Mi-17 helicopter crashed in an open field only few hundred metres away from his house on Wednesday.