Ahmedabad, Mar 18 (PTI)
A carnage in far away New Zealand has left three families grieving in Gujarat as four of their relatives are among those killed in the shootings at two mosques in Christchurch that shook the world. At least 50 people were killed in the ghastly terror attack on Friday as worshippers gathered for weekly prayers.
Two of the deceased were natives of Bharuch and Navsari districts in Gujarat. Besides, a father-son duo killed in the attack hailed from Vadodara and their family back home is shattered and finding it hard to cope with the loss of two of their members in the gun attack on a mosque in New Zealand last Friday.
Yasmeen Vora from Vadodara said their relative Arif Vora (58) went to New Zealand with his wife on February 14 to see their son Rameez Vora (28), who was recently blessed with a baby boy. Rameez Vora, who was settled in New Zealand, took his parents to offer Friday prayers at the mosque when the incident took place, she said.
“Arif’s other son Raheel, who lives in Australia, confirmed that both Arif bhai and Rameez were killed in the attack,” said the distraught woman. The family members approached Lok Sabha member from Vadodara, Ranjan Bhatt, who has assured help, she said.
Equally heart-wrenching is the case of deceased Hafiz Musa Patel (56), an Imam hailing from Luwara village in Bharuch, who had gone to New Zealand only a few weeks back as he was planning to settle there, his relative Ayub Ghadi said.
Patel was living in Fiji since the last three decades. His two daughters and three sons are settled in Australia and New Zealand. “He went to New Zealand three weeks ago after his citizenship there was confirmed,” Ghadi said.
“He had gone to the mosque to offer Friday prayers with his wife and a friend when the shooting happened. Bullets hit Patel’s back following which he was shifted to a hospital in Christchurch where he succumbed,” he said.
Besides, Juned Kara from Navsari was also among those killed in the attack, district Superintendent of Police Girish Pandya said. “Kara, a native of Adada village in Navsari, was among those killed in the attack. It was confirmed last night,” Pandya said.