The Quest for Truth

The Quest for Truth

The troubling story of a man who lost his wife on the Malaysia Airline Flight 370

Prabha Chandran
August 05 , 2017
01 Min Read

If a fear of flying has you in its grip, then Life After MH370: Journeying Through a Void is not for you. For the rest, the disappearance of that plane on March 8, 2014, remains one of the most baffling mysteries in aviation history. Meet author K.S. Narendran, an education consultant from Tamil Nadu, “who led an ordinary life” until the phone rang that morning to tell him his wife of 25 years, Chandrika, was on the missing flight. What follows is a harrowing account of the days and years that passed as he slowly internalised his loss and anger while fighting to get to the truth through a wall of official confusion and misrepresentation. Statistics on the probability of being in a plane crash vary between one in 5.4 million and one in 11 million. But when tragedy strikes, it is so dramatic and final that families are left reeling in shock and disbelief. Except that there is nothing ‘final’ about the disappearance of MH370. No debris, no bodies, and a devious cover-up by the Malaysian government, as alleged by the author. Although a dozen books have been written on MH370, “there are at least 239 stories waiting to be told at length—those of the families of the 239 passengers” on board that aircraft whose lives will never be the same, says the author. Narendran uses writing as a “way of emptying” himself, of rallying other passengers’ families to prod the Malaysian government after it inexplicably called off the search. In a poignant passage, he writes: “As the months rolled on and the plane remained elusive, anger matched curiosity and the quest for the truth… It has suspended our ability to grieve, to move on. The stronger I tried to be, the more brittle I became. I was angry with the abrupt rupture to an otherwise uneventful existence. I was agitated that there were no satisfactory answers. Most of all, I realised how much I missed you (Chandrika) being around.” The life of an ordinary man takes an extraordinary turn in this moving account of tragedy and learning to live with the “new normal.” 

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