Hyderabad, June 9 :
The ghastly tragedy in Himachal Pradesh shattered many young dreams and plunged their families into gloom.
The young boys and girls, all students of an engineering college here, had dreams of building a career and lending a helping hand to their parents but the tragedy cut short their lives.
A pall of gloom descended on the house of Rambabu in a hamlet in Mata mandal of Nalgonda district. This son of a security guard was a second-year student of electronics engineering at V.N.R. Vignana Jyothi College of Engineering, Bachupally on the outskirts of Hyderabad.
After finishing Class 12 from Suryapet in his native district, Rambabu migrated to Hyderabad for higher studies. Friends recalled that he was a brilliant student.
Rambabu’s father Sekhar Naik rushed to Himachal Pradesh after hearing about the disaster. His hopes of finding his son alive were shattered when he found his body among the five recovered from Beas river Monday.
According to information reaching here, 24 students including six girls were washed away in the river in Mandi district when water was released from a hydro electric project.
The parents of Ishwariya were on a pilgrimage while she choose to be with her friends for the picnic. It was gloom at the residence of this student at Alwal in Hyderabad as the family received the shocking news of her death. The tragedy struck them when her father had gone to Sabrimala while her mother was in Madurai.
Enjoying their holidays, the youth were taking photographs on the dry river bed when a flash flood caught them unawares. While those on the bank survived, the others were not lucky.
A smiling Vijetha posed for picture and this last smile was captured on the mobiles of her friends. The survivors recalled in horror that within a couple of minutes, she along with others were washed away as they watched helplessly. The body of Vijetha was also found Monday.
With hopes of finding the missing students fast receding, their parents fear the worst.
The parents of M. Akhil, a student from Dilsukhnagar locality in Hyderabad, were inconsolable on hearing about the tragedy. They recalled that he wanted to celebrated his 20th birthday with his friends and had even carried new clothes with him.
The tragedy sent shock waves in both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. Though majority of the students are from Telangana districts, the government of the neighbouring state also came forward by arranging special flights to take parents of missing students to Himachal and bringing the stranded students back.
The management of the private college expressed shock over the tragedy. Some representatives of the management broke down while talking to reporters.
“God should have taken our lives instead of these young boys and girls,” said T.V. Rao, chief administrative officer of the institute.