Sharjah, February 14: An Indian tourist couple was killed and five others from their family, including two children, injured after their speeding vehicle flipped over multiple times during a desert safari in Sharjah. The couple, who were on their first visit to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for a family reunion, were being taken back after the safari when their vehicle crashed on Tuesday, the Khaleej Times said in a report on Wednesday.
Rohinibahen Vinodbhai Patel, 42, died on the spot while her husband Vinodbhai Patel, 47, suffered a cardiac arrest after the accident and died a few hours later at a hospital. The family hailed from Baroda in Gujarat. An official from the Sharjah Police said the driver, who was from a private tour company, was speeding when he lost control over his vehicle on Al Nazawi Road in the Madam area around 10.30 p.m. He sustained injuries and had been hospitalised.
The family came to the UAE on February 8, said Rohinibahen's brother-in-law, Dipak Patel, a US citizen. He was the only member of the family who rode in another car during the desert safari. According to the report, he had gone ahead of the other family members and got the shocking news when he asked their tour company where his family was. They were all hoping to enjoy a reunion as they had not seen each other for over 12 years, the daily said.
"Rohinibahen is my wife Vaishali's oldest sister. My wife, our kids - Charmi, 13, and Manav, 9 - and Rohinibahen's younger brother, Yogesh, and his wife, Meghna, formed the holiday group," said Dipak Patel.
"We went to Ferrari World Abu Dhabi and the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and we were having a great time... We were supposed to enjoy this short trip in Dubai and return to India. I was going to head back to Chicago with my family on February 23," he added.
Yogesh's wife, Meghna, was in a critical condition, while Dipak Patel's wife, Vaishali, suffered a fracture on her hip and injuries on her neck and shoulders. The children suffered minor injuries.