One minute and 52 seconds. That was all it took for jubilation to turn into tragedy.
Sonu Jaiswal, an alumnus of Veer Bahadur Singh Purvanchal University, was among the five Indians who were killed in the crash of the Yeti Airlines which plunged into a river gorge of Pokhara airport in Nepal. Three others on the flight- Abhishek Kushwaha, Vishal Sharma and Anil Kumar Rajbhar, residents of different villages in the Ghazipur district, were friends.
Jaiswal was on Facebook live when the incident happened- the camera first turned towards the front seat behind which flew a flap of the airlines, then to himself and then outside the window. Cheers and laughs were heard. 50 seconds into the video, flames shoot up on the wings. There is a blinding of saffron, yellow, red and black. Some seconds later the plane appears to plunge. If Jaiswal’s face showed any fright or terror, it shall not be known for the phone camera never pans back to him.
#viralvideo #LiveVideo— Sawant Suman ساونت سمن 🇮🇳💙 (@SumanSawant) January 16, 2023
Facebook live video before Nepal plane crash,at least 68 people were killed in the crash, including 5 Indians.#planecrash #Pokhara INR 7.09 #NepalPlaneCrashVideo #YetiAirlines #Yat pic.twitter.com/M2gRyF7Mnc
No announcements were heard from the flight deck- indicative of the fact that the crew were taken unawares. Angry social media users would later comment that aircraft in Nepal are made of discarded parts from Poland.
Sonu Jaiswal (29), a father to three was a liquor trader. Both Anil Rajbhar (28) and Abhishek Singh Kushwaha (23) ran Jan Sewa Kendras while Vishal Sharma (23) worked in a two-wheeler factory. The fifth deceased is Sanjay Jaiswal from Bihar.
The youth had gone to Nepal on January 12. After offering prayers at Kathmandu’s Pashupatinath Nath temple they were onward bound to Pokhara for a fun time. The entire trip was to last seven days.
Jaiswal was not the only one to go live from the aircraft. Russian blogger Elena Banduro, 33, who had recently told her family she was pregnant, did so too.
The social media manager from Moscow had in her last post put up a smiling selfie on the plane with the English caption: “Go to Nepal.”