THRISSUR: As his mourning village awaits the body of Junior Warrant Officer (JWO) Pradeep Arakkal, who was among the 13 persons including Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) General Bipin Rawat killed in the helicopter crash in Coonoor, the 37-year-old army officer's father is still unaware of the demise of his son.
Pradeep's father Radhakrishnan Arakkal is on oxygen support and hence there are only a few people gathered at his house at Ponnukkara village.
Pradeep had come to visit his family only a few days back when he had taken his ailing father to a hospital for treatment, relatives said.
Pradeep's younger brother Prasad has gone to Coimbatore after hearing the tragic news on Wednesday, they said.
Pradeep had rung up his mother Kumari on Wednesday morning to share his joy of receiving the rare opportunity to accompany the Chief of Defence Staff.
Meanwhile, Kerala Revenue Minister K Rajan is leading the preparations to receive Pradeep's body in Thrissur. He visited the bereaving family on Thursday to offer his condolences. The minister said all arrangements have been made to receive the body. The state government is awaiting an official intimation in this regard, he said.
Thrissur Collector Haritha V. Kumar said that the district administration was also waiting for official communication. "I have talked to both Ernakulam district collector and Palakkad district collector to make necessary arrangements to receive the body. If the body arrives by flight we will receive the mortal remains at the Kochi airport and if by road, we will receive it at Palakkad."
Tamil Nadu CM #MKStalin and Telangana Governor #TamilisaiSoundararajan paid floral tributes to the mortal remains of CDS Gen #BipinRawat and others who died in a #HelicopterCrash in Tamil Nadu's #Coonoor.— The New Indian Express (@NewIndianXpress) December 9, 2021
Express photos | @rk_clicks. pic.twitter.com/1EFDWupR02