Wednesday, June 20, 2018 | ePaper

Anguish growing

Victims' bodies may not be released immediately

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Special Correspondent :
The anguish of the families of Bangladeshi passengers killed in the US-Bangla plane crash in Kathmandu on Monday may be prolonged as the Nepalese authorities rejected to handover the bodies immediately.
"It could take four more days to three weeks before their bodies are released," Mashfee Binte Shams, Bangladesh Ambassador to Nepal told journalists on Wednesday.
She said the bodies would be handed over to the families after due process.
"Their bodies would be handed over after completion of FIR, autopsy and DNA test. It would take four days to three weeks to complete the process," Mashfee Binte Shams added. The ambassador said the Bangladesh embassy has been coordinating with the relatives of the survivors and victims after they arrived in Nepal.
"We have opened a coordination cell at the embassy so that the bodies can be identified quickly and be handed handover to their relatives," she said.
Nepal Home Ministry reported that 28 Bangladeshis, 22 Nepalese, a Chinese passenger lost their lives in the accident, while 10 others were undergoing treatment in hospitals.
All the four crew, including pilot Captain Abid Sultan, are also dead. The other three are co-pilot Prithula Rashid and flight attendants Khwaza Hossain Mohammad Shafi and Shamim Akter.
The bodies of all dead passengers were taken to the Maharajgunj-based Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital in Kathmandu on Tuesday.
"DNA samples have been collected from 18 charred bodies. Their bodies would be released to their families after confirming their identities," local media reported the forensic experts of the hospital.
The bodies will have to remain at the Hospital until DNA samples are tested.
Rest of the bodies would be handed over to their families when they provide conclusive evidence to identify them after autopsy.
 "We came here for taking the bodies immediately. But the authorities are yet to take step to expedite the process," said a relative of the plane crush victim in an interview with a Bangladeshi private TV channel.
He said the process has already been plunged in a complex phase. Three days have already been elapsed but still we do not know when we receive the bodies. The delay in releasing the bodies is also making our distress intense.
"Even we are not allowed to see the bodies. We're facing non-cooperation from both Nepalese authorities and Bangladesh embassy in this regard," he said.
On Tuesday, a flight of US-Bangla reached Nepal with the family members of the Bangladeshi crash victims from Dhaka. According to the US-Bangla Airlines, 46 members of crash victims' families and seven of its officials boarded the flight.
Meanwhile, Bangladesh on Tuesday offered technical support to Nepal authorities for conducting the DNA test.  It has also made the proposal to use DNA Lab in Dhaka. 

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