“Swathi was a very pleasant and friendly person. This news has come as a shock to us,” said her housemate at a paying guest (PG) accommodation in Whitefield, Bangalore.
Twenty-four-year-old Swathi Parchuri, an employee of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), died in the twin explosions on board the Bangalore-Guwahati Express in Chennai on Thursday.
Her housemates recalled how they first thought Swathi may have only been hurt in the blast, but later realised that she was the only person killed in the explosions in which 14 other passengers were injured. “We got to know about her tragic end through television news this morning”, said the housemate, who is also her TCS colleague.
One of her housemates, who did not wish to be identified, told The Hindu that Swathi had moved into stay with them in the PG accommodation barely three weeks ago.
Swathi shared the room on the fourth floor in the four-storeyed Ram Sai PG accommodation on ITPL Road in Seetha Ram Palya with two of her colleagues at TCS. The PG accommodates about 40 women and many of them work at TCS.
Swathi had left the PG accommodation around 9 p.m. on Wednesday, accompanied by another PG housemate and TCS colleague, Rajatha. “Both were in the same bogie, but Rajatha was lucky to escape,” the housemate said.
Swathi’s roommate Monica B. left for Chennai soon after the news about Swathi’s tragic death was confirmed. Speaking to The Hindu over phone, Monica said she was alerted about the tragedy by Rajatha soon after the explosions.
The long weekend had given Swathi enough time to travel to her hometown in Guntur. “After joining TCS on January 1, 2014, it was for the first time that she was going to meet her family. She was looking forward to spending time with them,” the housemate said.
It was Swathi’s first job after completing her M.Tech in Guntur. She was working as an assistant system engineer at Global Axis Branch/ SJR Branch of TCS in Whitefield. She had stayed in another PG in Kundalahalli, near Whitefield, before moving into Ram Sai PG.
Incidentally, Swathi and her two roommates, Monica and Jayashree R., had joined TCS on January 1 after completing three months of training provided by the IT company in Trivandrum. The trio had moved into the PG accommodation around the same time.
According to the PG accommodation manager, Ananthram Reddy, the CCTV footage in the building showed Swati and Rajatha leaving the building around 9 p.m. The footage was taken by the Mahadevapura police after the Indian Railway authorities informed them.
Meanwhile, TCS in a statement has mourned the death of Swathi. “We are deeply shocked and saddened at this unfortunate loss of life of our colleague in this tragic incident. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family at this time,” the statement read.