On May 10, 30-year-old Sowmya Santhosh, who had been working as a caretaker in Israel’s Ashkelon, was killed in an airstrike by Hamas.

Dead body of Indian woman Soumya killed in Israel during an airstrike of Palestine being kept at her home in Kerala's IdukkiPC/Twitter
news Death Monday, May 17, 2021 - 08:41

A nine-year-old boy, standing dejectedly beside the lifeless body of his mother, was one of the heart-wrenching sights that emerged from the house of Sowmya Santhosh, the woman who was killed in the recent airstrike in Israel. Thirty-year-old Sowmya, a caregiver in Israel’s Ashkelon, was killed in the airstrike by Hamas on May 10. Her body was repatriated and laid to rest on May 16 in her hometown Keerithodu, located in Kerala’s Idukki district. Sowmya’s family and relatives conducted her funeral at the Nitya Sahayamatha Church in Keerithodu. 

Sowmya was a caregiver of an 80-year-old woman in Israel. She had been working in Israel for the past seven years. Sowmya was on a video call with her husband back in Kerala during the airstrikes by the Palestinian militant group Hamas. While the 80-year-old woman sustained injuries, Sowmya lost her life in the attack. Her mortal remains were brought to New Delhi from Israel on the morning of May 15 and taken to Idukki the same evening.

Idukki District Collector H Dinesh, Member of Parliament Dean Kuriakose and various other politicians also took part in the funeral rites held at her home on Sunday. Jonathan Zadka, Israel’s Consul General to south India, also attended the funeral. Speaking to Sowmya’s family members in Keerithod, Jonathan Zadka termed Sowmya as “an angel”. “I cannot imagine the grief of the family. Sowmya was the victim of a cowardly terrorist attack,” Jonathan Zadka told the media.

Sharing the images of his visit, he tweeted that he was “honoured” to pay his respects and convey his sympathies to the family and friends as she was laid to rest. “May she rest in peace. Our prayers are with the family that lost an angel in a cowardly #hamasterror attack,” he wrote. 

The conflict between Israeli and Palestine, which has been brewing for decades, escalated in mid-April (during the holy month of Ramadan). According to the latest reports, 181 Palestinians, including 52 children and 10 people in Israel (including Sowmya), have been killed in the airstrike by Israel and Hamas. The latest conflict is considered one of the worst spells of Israel-Palestine violence after the 2014 conflict.