India's Prime Minister, Mrs. Indira Gandhi, on Friday (1 June) attended the state funeral for?
India's Prime Minister, Mrs. Indira Gandhi, on Friday (1 June) attended the state funeral for one of her leading Cabinet colleagues, who died in Thursday (31 May) night's crash of an Indian Airlines Boeing 737 near New Delhi Airport.
Fifty-seven-year-old Mohan Kumaramangalam, India's Minister of Steel and Mines, was among the 48 people who died in the crash. India's newly-appointed High Commissioner to Australia, Mr. Gurnam Singh, also died.
In a public tribute to Mr. Kumaramangalam -- one of Mrs. Gandhi's top aides -- the Indian Prime Minister said the country had lost "a leader of great dedication, untold brilliance and dynamism." Mrs. Gandhi expressed heartfelt condolences to the families of those killed in the crash.
Seventeen survivors, including the pilot and co-pilot of the Boeing, Indian Deputy Minister Bal Govind Verma and two Indian Members of Parliament, were recovering in hospital on Friday from their ordeal.
Aviation experts probing the crash are investigating the possibility that the airliner hit high tension electricity cables before it crashed in flames in a fashionable New Delhi suburb. The aircraft was reported to have exploded before the crash. Many of the bodies were charred beyond recognition, and were only identified by their personal belongings.