The Survivor of the Pan Am Flight 73 hijack, She Remembered The gruesome evening When Neerja Bhanot Killed: On the internet and on the social site the age-progressed photos of the four terrorists, who were responsible for the hijacking the Pan Am Flight 73 around 3 decades ago almost, has brought back the haunting memory of this deadly occurrence.
On that fateful night of September 5, 1986, the passengers of that misfortunate flight recounted the experience of the hijacking which was consequences of killing at least 20 people on board reportedly, which includes the flight attendant Neerja Bhanot.
Here a survivor from the Pan Am Flight 73, Minakshi Shah, recalled the horror incident on that ill-fated day when she was traveling with her three-year-old son and she was on her way to Los Angeles.
“In those days, traveling to the West Coast of the US was not an easy task. The Pan Am flight would have taken us to New York with two stops and we had to catch another connecting flight to LA. It was a journey of over 30 hours. If that wasn’t enough, it was my second long journey with my son without my husband’s company,” Shah, who was 32 years of age at the time when the mishap took place, told International Business Times India.
Of course, this was a deadly or risky or haunting trip for the mother and son you can say. But what happened on September 5, 1986, is still haunting them, especially when they hear the word terrorist or Neerja Bhanot.
“We had boarded an early morning flight from Bombay and reached Karachi. Passengers were boarding the aircraft in Karachi when we heard gunshots. There was mayhem all around and my worst nightmares came true when announcements were made that the plane had been hijacked,” Shah added.
The passengers were then left with no other option only to managed themselves in Pan Am crew and the terrorists were saying. “All of us were moved to the middle of the plane. And as there was not enough space, we were made to sit in the aisles and exit doors. My son was crying uncontrollably and for the first time, I felt helpless in doing anything,” she recalled.
She remembered the incident when the hijackers were often going towards the exit doors with some hostages at gunpoint. “They were also keeping an eye on the aisle to keep the hostages under their control. Late in the evening, we began to hear continuous gunfire inside the plane. And amid the chaos and taking advantage of the darkness, we somehow managed to escape from the aircraft and were lucky to escape with minor bruises,” Shah said.
Shah and her son were later transported to a hotel to received proper help and hospitality from the US embassy for their return to LA. Currently, Minakshi Shah is 68-year-old and retired settled with her husband in Los Angeles.
Her son minor son is now 35-years-old, married and blessed with 2 kids.
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