Addis Ababa: Eight Indians were among 157 people killed when an Ethiopian Airlines flight crashed shortly after take-off from the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, en route to Nairobi, Kenya. The deceased Indian nationals were Prerit Dixit, 43, his wife Kosha, 37, their daughters Ashka, 15, Anushka, 12, Kosha’s parents Pannagesh Vaidya, 65, Hansini, 60, Nukavarapu Manisha, a doctor based in US and Shikha Garg, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) consultant attached with India's environment ministry. The plane was identified by its manufacturer, Boeing, as one of its newest models, a 737 Max 8. Earlier, a Lion Air flight using the same model of plane went down in Indonesia in October killing 189 people.
There were passengers from at least 35 countries. The dead included 32 Kenyans, 18 Canadians, nine Ethiopians, eight each from the US, China and Italy, and seven each from France and Britain, the airline said. The flight on Sunday took off in good weather from Bole International Airport and lost contact six minutes later, the airline said. The plane went down near Bishoftu, about 56 km southeast of Addis Ababa.
Six of Gujarati family from Surat, Vadodara killed
The six family members from Canada, who died in the Ethiopian Airline crash were from Gujarat and were travelling from Addis Ababa to Nairobi. The family members were from Surat and Vadodara and their relatives live in Surat. Those who died were Prerit Dixit, 43, his wife Kosha, 37, their daughters Ashka, 15, Anushka, 12 and Kosha’s parents Pannagesh Vaidya, 65, Hansini, 60. While Prerit’s parents live in Surat, Kosha’s parents were from Vadodara.
Pannagesh, a mechanical engineer from M S University in Vadodara, had shifted to Ahmedabad few years ago. He used to often travel to Toronto and live there with his son Manan Vaidya. His daughter Kosha also lived with her biotechnologist husband Prerit in Toronto. Prerit, Kosha and two daughters have Canadian citizenship. Prerit’s father Virendra Dixit, 72, and mother Parinda, 69, live in Surat.
Dixits said that Pannagesh’s friend Prakash was winding up his business in Ethiopia and permanently coming to live in India. He had asked Pannagesh to come and stay with them for a few days. They worked together in past. Since Pannagesh and Hansini were planning to go to Ethiopia, Prerit and Kosha also planned to join them with their daughters. They wanted to visit African safari in Kenya and Kosha’s birthplace Mombasa.