Mumbai: The lone victim from the city who perished in the Kuwait fire, Denny Karunakaran (33), was a longtime resident of Malwani in Malad before the family shifted to Virar. Denny went to Kuwait four years ago where he was working as an accounts and sales coordinator.
The death of the quiet unassuming bachelor has come as a shock to his family, friends and neighbours.His remains were expected to arrive Friday night. Denny’s last rites will be held at 3.00pm Sunday at Penial AG Church, Malwani, followed by burial at Christian cemetery, Charkop Naka in Malad west.
Former neighbours at Malwani Kasturi building, a Mhada apartment, mourned the tragedy that had befallen the family. Sahebe Khan said, “Denny’s mother died a few years ago and after his sister got married, the family shifted to Virar. Denny, meanwhile, secured a job abroad.”
Denny went to Kuwait to work as an accounts and sales coordinator four years ago. The family had stayed in Malwani for 42 years. Denny and his sister Daisy went to school in the locality. Daisy declined to speak to mediapersons Friday. Denny studied at Wilson College, Chowpatty, and later moved to Bible College in Punalur, Kerala, for his graduation. After the death of his mother, Denny’s father Baby, a plumber by profession, moved to their native town Karunagappally in Kollam district of Kerala. Relatives recalled Denny as a quiet person who wanted to make it big in life. Yet, he had never given a thought to working in the Gulf till his brother-in-law Manoj, employed in Kuwait, helped him find a job.
It was Denny’s savings that helped him buy a flat in Acropolis building, Global City in Virar (west), about two years ago. His family was looking for an alliance for him as he planned to visit his father for Christmas. They belong to the Pentecostal denomination Assemblies of God church.
Fr Philip John, presbyter of Penial AG Church, knew Denny since he was a boy of seven. “Theirs was an old family from the area. That is why they are choosing to conduct the burial here, though they now live in Virar,” he said.
And Denny’s friend, Thomas Varghese from Malwani, offered fulsome praise. “He was a very nice, pleasant person. Denny was very spiritual and devoted to God. That is why he even went to Bible College in Kerala,” he said. Thomas affirmed that the Malayalees’ Gulf dream remained untarnished. “The Middle East is a nice, safe region to work in. In fact, one has never heard of a tragedy of this scale before,” he said.