City techie dead, trip to the loo saves her friends

D. Shalini, a city techie from the city, was charred to death in the Nellore train tragedy while two of her friends had a lucky escape. The three software engineers working for Accenture, Chennai, had come to Warangal to attend a friend’s engagement over the weekend. A pall of gloom descended on Srinivasnagar Colony in Kapra as hundreds of relatives and neighbours gathered to console Shalini’s family. Shalini’s father D. Hanumantha Reddy, a realtor, went to Nellore to bring home his daughter’s charred remains.

For Shalini’s friends Y. Prasanthi and Sindhuja, the joy of attending their friend’s engagement didn’t last long. They said, “It was dark and there was smoke everywhere. We didn’t find her in her berth. We got out through the window and called out to her but there was no response. We didn’t find her among the survivors.”

Even after identifying the body by locket, the two were searching hospitals in the hope of finding Shalini alive. The two friends had gone to the toilet when the accident happened, which is, perhaps, what saved them. Harihara Chary, father of Sindhuja, a resident of Warangal, said, “Prasanthi and Sindhuja are in a state of shock. They told me that the doors of their coach were jammed so they got down from the next one. They were all roommates and worked for the same company. They stayed with us on Saturday and on Sunday morning they left for Karimnagar by road. They returned in the evening and boarded the train to Chennai. Prasanthi hails from Hyderabad.”

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