‘He could have survived if proper medical facility was available’

A large number of people, including family members and relatives on Monday participated in the funeral of Krishnayya Mogaveera, who was inadvertently killed by French troops in Bangui, capital of Central African Republic, last week.

Krishnayya (37), who was an accountant at Roffe Pharma for the past eight years, was among the 15 persons proceeding in two cars to the Bangui airport in a bid to flee the country after Seleka rebels seized the city. In a case of mistaken identity the group was fired at by French soldiers guarding the airport.

Krishnayya’s body was flown from Delhi to Mangalore on Monday and was taken on road to Balkur, about 43 km from Udupi. Krishnayya’s mother Balamma, father Narayana, wife Sumana, brothers Shekhar and Anand broke down when the coffin was opened.

The cremation took place in the backyard of the family house. Krishnayya’s three-and-a-half-year-old son Aditya along with Anand and Shekhar lit the funeral pyre.

Relative’s account

Krishnayya’s relative Uday G. Naik from Holamaggi village near Haklady, who worked as a sales representative in the same company (with Krishnayya) in Bangui for six years, told presspersons that both he and Krishnayya had tried to leave Bangui on March 23, but the flight was cancelled on that day.

The situation worsened the same night as Seleka rebels seized Bangui. Since there was a flight from Bangui on March 25, they along with 13 persons left for the airport in two cars. Though the rebels were guarding the roads, they had no problem in getting close to the airport.

But when they were about 800 metres from the airport, their vehicles were fired at by the French troops and Krishnayya was one of the six persons inured. He was taken to a nearby camp, but it lacked adequate medical facilities.

“Krishnayya was alive for nearly half an hour after he was hit. If there were proper medical facilities he would have survived,” Mr. Naik said with tears in his eyes.

Consulate staff’s visit

Earlier in the day, officials from the Consulate General of France in Bangalore arrived here and met Krishnayya’s parents, his wife, and son and expressed their condolences.

Prakash S. Bangera, Krishnayya’s cousin, told The Hindu that Eric Lavertu, Consul General and Hemangini Rakshit, press attaché from the consulate, explained the incident leading to the tragedy to the family members.

“When I asked compensation for Krishnayya’s family, they told me that investigations were on into the incident and a report was expected in 20 to 30 days. They asked us to be in touch with the consulate,” Mr. Bangera said.

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