BENGALURU: A 29-year-old Bengaluru resident died in a landslide near Ardhkuwari Temple at the Vaishno Devi shrine while helping a five-year-old child and his mother.
The deceased Shashidhar Kumar was working with a dental aids manufacturing firm and was the lone earning member of his family.
He is the younger son of K C Nagaraj, a retired KSRTC employee.
A person, who was in the group of pilgrims, said, “It was the first time Shashidhar had set out to Vaishno Devi. Shashidhar’s father rushed to Jammu to receive the body.”
Sanjay, who was among the eight members from Karnataka on the pilgrimage, told Express, “Eight members from our group had left for darshan. There was heavy rainfall in the night. Three members opted to come on horses and others walked. Due to rainfall, Shashi stopped midway and took shelter at a place. He had stopped to put his camera and other gadgets such as mobile phone into a cover. He could have continued, but he decided to hang back to help another member, Bindu Sahni, who was finding it tough to manage her five-year-old son Vishal. He gave them his space to stay.”
“It was around 11am when the landslide happened. Within a minute, everything vanished. His body was buried in the debris. We were around 2km away from where the landslide happened and got the news only at 1pm. On getting information, the father of the deceased, K C Nagaraj, reached Jammu on Saturday evening. Our travel plan has been cut short and we will return to Bengaluru on Sunday,” he said.
Bindu Sahni and Vishal from Chhattisgarh also died in the landslide.
Another Bengaluru resident, Santosh, who miraculously escaped from the landslide, sustained minor injuries. Sanjay said, “He has got two stitches on his hand and is out of danger.”
The Katra police said, “We got information by morning and by the time we reached, the bodies were buried. Autopsy has been done on Shashidhar’s body and we have handed over the bodies to family members.”