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Indian American couple among 34 dead in boat fire

Nirmal Kaustubh and Sanjeeri Deopujari from Rajul Sharma

A couple from Connecticut has been identified in the fatal boat fire in Southern California, reports the Stamford Advocate.

Kaustubh Nirmal and Sanjeeri Deopujari have been married since 2016. Nirmal worked as a business analyst at Merrill Lynch and Deopujari had a dental practice in Norwalk.

According to the American Bazaar, authorities used DNA mapping to identify the two. In all, 32 other people died in the fire. All were below deck sleeping at the time the fire broke out and likely died from smoke inhalation. Only five crew members on the top deck when the fire broke out survived. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

“He found a soulmate in Sanjeeri,” Nirmal’s cousin Rajul Sharma said to the LA Times. “Their love for each other was apparent even without them speaking about it.” “God took them away from us untimely and unfairly, but even he didn’t have the heart to separate them in death,” he said.

Others identified among the dead include five members of a Filipino American family as well as a Chinese American couple.

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