A pall of gloom descended at the parental house of Gp Capt Sunil Kumar Bhatia, pilot of the chopper of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YSR Reddy that crashed yesterday, here today.
A large number of residents converged at the residence of Bhatia’s uncle in Mahavir Park here to mourn the death of the pilot. Bhatia was brought up by his uncle and aunt after the death of his parents.
Hailing from the city, Bhatia, who was selected in the Indian Air Force a few years ago, was presently deputed as pilot of the Chief Minister’s chopper in Hyderabad.
Bhatia had been residing there with his wife Sanjana from Hisar and two sons - Kashish and Moksh.
Chief Security Officer ASC Wesley; and (right) Principal Secretary S Subramanyam
Sunil, who had completed his primary education from a local school here, had shifted to Sainik School, Kunjpura, later to complete his education till class XII, from where he was selected in the Indian Air Force.
He had joined as a helicopter pilot two years ago, said his uncle Inder Pal Bhatia. He said Sunil was a bright and an intelligent student and had been brought up under his supervision after he lost his parents at an early age.
The debris of the Bell 430 helicopter, lies scattered at the crash site. — PTI
Some of the family members had left for Hyderabad after it was reported that Sunil and other members of the crew of the chopper had been missing along with the Andhra Pradesh CM.
Sources said Sunil’s father Satpal Bhatia was a teacher in the local government school. The house belonging to Sanjana’s parents in Urban Estate II, Hisar, was locked as her parents were reported to be away. Neighbours said they had gone to Gurgaon a few days ago.
Sunil’s father-in-law KC Thukral was an employee of Haryana Agricultural University. A family friend of the Thukrals said Sunil’s death coincided with his marriage anniversary yesterday. Meanwhile, Haryana Governor Jagannath Pahadia and Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda have expressed grief over the sudden and sad demise of Bhatia.