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Sharjah resident relieved as mother on ill-fated Air India Express flight survives crash

Saman Haziq/Sharjah
Filed on August 7, 2020
air india express crash, kozhikode, dubai, vande bharat


At least 10 have been reported dead in the flight that took off from Dubai.

Sharjah resident Nadia K stared at the television in disbelief as news flashed that Air India Express flight IX1344 that departed from Dubai on Friday afternoon crash-landed at Kerala's Kozhikode airport.

Nadiya's 66-year old-mother, Sulekha Peedeyakkal, was on the ill-fated flight that reportedly skidded off the runway and fell 30 feet into a valley, killing the pilot and injuring several others.

Speaking to Khaleej Times over the phone, Nadiya, a school teacher, said: "We dropped our mother at the airport today on Friday morning at around 10am as her flight was to take off at 1.30pm. My younger brother was waiting at the Kozhikode airport as her flight was to land at 7.10pm but my cousin called us at around 7pm to tell me the plane had crash landed. We have been on calls with my brothers and other relatives since evening as none were able to locate my mother.

"There was complete pandemonium at the Kozhikode airport as everyone was busy with rescue operations and we were unable to get through any helpline numbers."

Nadiya said what caused her to panic was that she was unable to locate or reach her mother on the phone. "All phone lines at the Kozhikode airport were busy or not responding and we were told that the injured were being rushed to nearby hospitals so my brother and other relatives rushed to various hospitals around but were unable to locate my mother.

"Finally, one of our relatives spotted my mother being taken in an ambulance to a private hospital in Calicut. My brother and relatives are now on their way to Calicut and we hope she is okay," said a worried Nadiya.

Nadiya's mother Sulekha came to Sharjah before the lockdown in early March on a visit visa but her visa expired on June 10 and she was returning to India on the special Vande Bharat repatriation flight to Kozhikode that departed from Dubai International airport Terminal 2 on Friday afternoon. Sulekha hails from Kottayil, Mallappuram district.

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