It has been reported that at least six Indians were killed when an Australia-born gunman opened fire with assault rifles during Friday prayers in Christchurch, New Zealand.
“We have been pursuing with NZ auth whereabouts of 9 Indians, incl 2 PIOs. 2 indians receiving treatment. Following up with NZ Govt for others. Also r in regular touch with their families (sic),” the Twitter account of the Indian High Commission in New Zealand had said.
According to sources, two Indian nationals were injured and seven reported missing, including two New Zealand nationals of Indian origin.
As the confirmation came, four families in Gujarat and two families across Telangana and Kerala Saturday prepared for the trip to Christchurch to bring home the bodies of their relatives for the last rites.
Four Gujaratis, including a father-son duo from Vadodara, an NRI from Bharuch and an Overseas Citizens of India (OCI) with roots in Navsari, were also among the list of victims.
Among the 49 victims was Ancy (23) from Kodungallur in Kerala’s Thrissur district and the wife of Ponnadathu Abdul Nazar. Ancia, who was in the women’s section, died while Nazar managed to escape.
The family of 30-year-old software engineer from Hyderabad, Fahraj Ahsan, confirmed he was among the 49 victims identified on Saturday.
Another victim of the terror attack was Hafiz Musa Vali Patel (52), a native of Luvara village of Bharuch district. He succumbed to his injuries in hospital after 20 hours of treatment, as per the sources.
The other Indian-origin man with roots in Karimnagar district of Telangana killed in the attack was Mohammed Imran Khan (47), who died at the Linwood mosque. He was seen in a video of the attack and it is how his family identified him.
Approximately 200,000 Indian and Indian-origin people live in New Zealand. There are over 30,000 Indian students in the country, according to the Indian High Commission’s data on its website.