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I hid my child under the bus seat when bullets were fired: Survivor of J&K terror attack

Terrorists opened fire on the 53-seater bus, killing 9 people and injuring 41 others.

New Delhi:

“I bent down and hid my two children under the bus seat as bullets were fired from the mountain… I will never forget those 20 to 25 minutes of terror,” Bhawani Shankar said , a survivor of a fatal terrorist attack on a bus carrying passengers.

Shankar, a resident of Delhi’s Tughlaqbad extension, said that June 6 was his wedding anniversary and he went to the Vaishno Devi shrine in Jammu. Radha Devi and her two children – five-year-old daughter Deeksha and three-year-old daughter.

Shankar and his family were among the five people from Delhi who were injured in the terror attack and are undergoing treatment at hospitals in Jammu and Qasmir.

Terrorists opened fire on a 53-seater bus on its way from Shiv Khori temple to Katra Mata Vaishno Devi shrine, causing the bus to veer off the road and fall into an abyss, killing 9 people and injuring 41 others. Gorge near Teryath village in Pawnee region.

“On June 6, we boarded the Shree Shakti Express from Delhi and reached Katra. On June 7, we went to the Vaishno Devi temple and returned to our hotel room on June 8 midnight,” Shankar told PTI over phone .

“On June 9, we took a bus from Katra to Shiv Khori temple and bought two tickets worth Rs 250 each,” he said.

He said the bus was attacked while returning from the temple.

“We were sitting near the center aisle of the bus. Our children were sitting on our laps. Around 6 p.m., we heard gunshots. In just 10 to 15 seconds, 20 to 25 shots were fired. One of the bullets The driver who hit us lost control of the bus,” he said.

He said the bus swerved and spun in the air before returning to an upright position but its wheels got stuck in boulders and trees in the hilly area.

“As the shooting continued on the hill, I bent down and hid the two children under the seat. We hugged each other tightly, thinking these might be our last moments. Some shouted ‘hamla ho gaya hai’ (this is a attack).

“We stayed in this position for 20 to 25 minutes because while we were lying in the ravine, several more gunshots were fired,” Shankar said, adding that he would never forget the horrific incident.

He said some passengers fell from the bus. He added that everyone was shouting until rescue teams arrived.

Shankar and his two children were admitted to the same hospital, while his wife was undergoing treatment at another hospital in Jammu and Kashmir.

“My son has a broken hand, my daughter has a head injury. I have internal injuries to my back and my wife has multiple injuries to her head and legs,” he said.

Shankar was a driver for Indian Oil Corporation officials in Delhi. He lives in Delhi’s Tughlaqabad extension with his wife, father and brother-in-law. His brother-in-law works in a private company.

“I’m in constant contact with my family in Delhi by phone,” he said.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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