» 05/24/2010, 00.00
Mangalore, survivor tells of air disaster
Joel D'Souza, 24, comes from a Catholic family. He thanks God for 'saving my life. " His mother: it is a "new Pentecost." Investigators are searching for the second part of the black box, which contains the flight information. The toll from the airline tragedy is of 158 dead and eight survivors.
Mumbai (AsiaNews) - This morning the team of the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), with the help of local police, took over the search of the digital recorder of the Air India Express flight that crashed last May 22 at Mangalore - in Karnataka, southwest India - killing 158 people.
Late yesterday afternoon investigators recovered the cockpit voice recorder (CVR) and the black box containing the data acquisition Flight unit (DFDAU). In aviation jargon, the "black box" indicates the two components that store everything that happens during the flight, communications between pilots and between pilots and control tower. The finding will help clarify what happened shortly after landing when the pilot was unable to stop the plane - from Dubai – which veered off the runway.
On board the aircraft there were 160 people, and six crew members. The toll from the tragedy is of 158 dead (including the entire crew) and only eight survivors. AsiaNews spoke to Joel D'Souza, one of the eight survivors. Yesterday morning the young man attended his first session of therapy in hospital. The doctors asked the family not to ask questions relating to the accident, because "it could be traumatic for him."
Rosy, his mother, sits beside him and prays to God to console the families who lost loved ones in the air tragedy. Joel D'Souza thanks God for saving him. He was able to escape from the blazing carcass of the plane and suffered only minor injuries. "The plane broke in two - says the survivor - and a dense black smoke invaded the cabin. I jumped out through an opening in the window. Six other passengers followed me. We fled, with the help of the inhabitants of the nearby village".
The survivor - of the Catholic faith – says he “fell to his knees" and "thanked God" for "saving my life. So I called my brother in Dubai, who advised my mother that I had been saved. " Thank God, the man adds, "my mother knew I was safe before they heard the plane on which I travelled had crashed."
Joel, a 24-year old native of Vamanjur, a town near Mangalore, was returning from a month spent in Dubai with his sister after completing a course of study on computer aided design in mechanical engineering. "I was in seat 23 – he tells AsiaNews - and we had barely touched the ground when it seemed that the pilot lost control of the aircraft." He adds that "despite attempts by the pilot to stop the vehicle, it did not happen, the airplane crashed and the cabin was filled with a thick blanket of smoke. "Me and six others managed to escape - he confesses - and then we saw the plane break in two."
At the time he was admitted to Kmc Hospital Mangalore with minor burns, a broken right leg and spine injuries which are not serious. "These injuries are nothing - God saved my life and I will be forever grateful." Joel was born and raised in a family with deep Catholic faith: his sister Saira, brother Santosh and mother Rosy who are gathered around his bed, reciting the rosary in thanks to God for the miracle, tell AsiaNews: "This is a new Pentecost for our family from the reality of death, God has given us new life, we pray to be close to God. "
Planes crashes in Mangalore, Church sends condolences
Plane was carrying 163 passengers and 6 crew members. Eight people may have survived. Card Gracias, president of the Catholic Bishopsâ€™ Conference of India, sends a message of condolences.
Bishop of Karnataka : Our Catholics ' living witnesses ' of Year of Faith
The Diocese of Mangalore has organized a three-day rally to celebrate the closing of the Year proclaimed by Benedict XVI. More than 20 thousand laity, 186 priests and thousands of nuns participated. For Msgr . Aloysius Paul D' Souza it was a moving occasion, " the enthusiasm of the people , a sign of their faith and how they put it into practice ." In 2008, 24 churches in Karnataka were destroyed by Hindu extremists .
Karnataka, thousands young people 'walk with Christ ' to celebrate the Year of Faith
Mangalore Catholic youth took part in a pilgrimage to the Cathedral of the Rosary. Their bishop , Msgr. D'Souza , invites them to " spread the message of Jesus in everyday life." More than 25 thousand faithful expected for closing ceremony of the Year proclaimed by Benedict XVI.
31/03/2015 INDIA - TANZANIA
Diocese of Mangalore: school, catechism and solar panels for mission in Africa
Since 2012 the diocese of Karnataka has sent four priests in Kituri, Tanzania. Msgr. Aloysius Paul D'Souza: "It was time to share the faith with those who need it most." Positive response from local population, working with the missionaries. Among the future projects, the opening of a kindergarten.
Two new churches for Mother Teresa
The first was inaugurated on 22 April in New Delhi, while the second will be blessed today in Mangalore. "Teresa of Calcutta," said Mgr Concessao, archbishop of Delhi, "has become a symbol of God's compassion."
CHINA - VATICAN
In China-Holy See talks, silence shrouds future of underground priests
Later this year, all priests must register to receive a certificate that allows them to exercise their ministry. But the request has to go through the Patriotic Association, whose statutes are "incompatible" with Catholic doctrine. Many priests, official and unofficial, now face an enormous dilemma.
19/08/2016 FRANCE â€" ISLAM
24/08/2016 SYRIA â€" TURKEY
20/08/2016 BANGLADESH - VATICAN
23/08/2016 FRANCE - ISLAM
AsiaNews IS ALSO A MONTHLY!
AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.