Infosys techie drowns in Bengaluru as car gets stuck in flooded underpass

It was a slow and horrible death for Infosys techie Bhanu Rekha, as the car she was travelling in, with her family, got stuck in a flooded underpass in Bengaluru. The car quickly filled up, as it kept raining and the floodwater level kept rising. Though some of the family members managed to exit from the vehicle, Bhanu Rekha’s lungs filled up with water.

Rescue under way in the underpass. Photo courtesy: Twitter/@east_bengaluru

Reportedly, she was still alive when the family was brought to the hospital, but Bhanu Rekha did not get the immediate treatment she needed to drain the water from her lungs. Her family members survived.

The irony of this tragedy was that Bhanu Rekha, 22, who was originally from Andhra Pradesh, was hosting her family from Vijaywada (in her home state) to show them around the tech capital of Karnataka.

Videos and images of the lethal mishap show a car almost completely submerged in the KR Circle underpass, with only its roof visible. According to a report by the Press Trust of India, members of the public rushed to aid of the stranded people in KR Circle underpass when the water rising began rising in their car and they shouted for help. The PTI report said that a woman commuting in an autorickshaw was also stranded at KR Circle, but she stayed above the water by climbing on top of the vehicle.

The people tied up saris together and threw them at the drowning people to help them keep their heads above the water. Some of them tried to climb out of the underpass using the saris and ropes lowered to them, but could not. Eventually, it took rescue swimmers and ladders to get everyone out.

Newly elected Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah told the media that Bhanu Rekha’s driver took the risk of going into the underpass. “The family from Vijayawada in Andhra Pradesh had hired a car and come to see Bengaluru. Bhanu Rekha works in Infosys. Due to the downpour, the barricade at the underpass fell down and the driver took the risk of crossing the underpass, which he should not have [done],” he said.

Flooding in Bengaluru has become a serious problem, with reports last year of upscale villa residents having to flee the floodwaters.