11-year-old dies, school bus fire toll rises to five | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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11-year-old dies, school bus fire toll rises to five

mumbai Updated: Sep 11, 2009 02:08 IST
G Mohiuddin Jeddy

Whatever little hope the Karungales may have had, it was taken away with the deaths of their two children.

After losing their son Neeraj (8), last Thursday, the family lost daughter Ankita (11) on Thursday.

Ankita, a Class 5 student of Changu Kana Thakur school, died at Airoli’s National Burns Centre (NBC), Thursday morning. She had suffered 53 per cent burns while Neeraj had 65 per cent burns.

Ankita was among the 22 students who suffered burn injuries when a private bus ferrying school children caught fire on the Sion-Panvel Highway at Panvel on August 20.

Four other children have already succumbed to their injuries. Riya Gupte (11), who had 60 per cent burns, died on Tuesday at Masina Hospital in Byculla. The other three died at NBC. Aniket Ponkshe (11), with 50 per cent burns, had succumbed to his injuries on August 29 and on August 22, 14-year-old Ronit Gore (70 per cent burns) died.

Ankita’s father, who has an IT business was inconsolable, having lost both his children. Like Neeraj and Riya, Ankita too was cremated at Amardham, the crematorium opposite the spot where the accident took place. The final rites took place at around 4.30 pm.

The Panvel police had arrested Vishwanath Phadtare (24), the driver and owner of the bus, and its cleaner Anil Yadav (20). They are in magisterial custody.

The forensic lab report from the Kalina-based laboratory on the cause of the fire is awaited.