Memorial for air crash victims by October: DC

11:15 AM, Saturday, July 18th, 2015

AB Ibrahim Mangaluru : Deputy Commissioner A B Ibrahim has said work on ‘22/5 park,’ a memorial for air crash victims will be completed by October.

The memorial is coming up on 90 cents land belonging to New Mangalore Port, at Thanneerbavi.

It was the place where unidentified victims of air crash were buried. Chairing a meeting on Friday, the DC said that the estimated cost of the project is Rs 35 lakh.

The initial work will include walk paths and fencing. The land is in the custody of NMPT and is situated on the road leading to Tanneerbavi, NMPT Superintendent Engineer Rajappa said. The meeting was attended by Architects’ Guild president and members.

When sought on their suggestions on the memorial, young architects said there is a need to conduct a competition on the models for memorial. The best model can be given a cash prize, said Architect Guild member Nelson Pais.

The meeting decided to give cash prize of Rs 50,000 and Rs 25,000 for the best models. The Architects’ Guild will conduct the competition and will select the best models and coordinate with the NMPT in laying the memorial park, said the DC.

“As the said land is situated on the sea shore, it would not be possible to plant trees. Hence, it has been decided to develop the park with flower bearing plants on pots and the NMPT will maintain it,” the DC said.

To a query on the need for conducting competition, instead the architects or artists can prepare a model and hand over it to the district administration, Nelson Pais said the competition will provide a platform for the young architects. The Architects’ Guild is ready to sponsor the prizes for the winners.

Mangalore Air Crash Victims Families Association President Mohammed Beary said “the construction of a memorial was the long pending demand of the families of the air crash victims. It was our wish to construct a memorial far away from the airport and in a serene atmosphere. With the efforts of the DC, the demand is being fulfilled.” The participants also said that the names of all the victims should be written on the memorial.

It may be recalled that on May 22, 2010, Air India Express IX812 from Dubai to Mangaluru overshot the runway after landing before crashing into the valley, killing 158 out of 166 passengers on board. Eight passengers on board had a miraculous escape.

The authorities could identify only 146 out of 158 bodies. The authorities decided to conduct mass burial of the unidentified bodies at the land belonging to NMP. Mangalore International Airport Director G T Radhakrishna, artist Dr Akter Hussain, Architect Guild president Venkatesh Pai were present.

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