Texas A&M student who died after Astroworld is remembered for her generosity, her family says

The 22-year-old Texas A&M student died after being on a ventilator with no sign of brain activity for days following the festival. The family turned down an offer from rapper Travis Scott to pay for the funeral.


Family of Astroworld Festival victim Bharti Shahani, 22, mourns at her funeral at the Winford Funeral Home in Houston before a service on Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2021.

Bharti Shahani was laid to rest on Tuesday after she was fatally injured during Travis Scott’s Astroworld festival earlier this month. Her family opted to decline an offer from the Houston rapper to cover funeral expenses, according to the family’s attorney.

Bharti attended the Astroworld festival with her cousin Mohit Bellani, and her sister Namrata Shahani. The three were separated from each other after the crowd surged toward the stage after Travis Scott began his 9 p.m. performance.

Her sister said the two were holding hands when things started to get out of control, and that the last thing Bharti said to her before they were separated was, “are you okay?”

"I couldn't take care of you that day, even though you've always taken care of me,” Namrata said. “I should have held your hand tighter.”

The 22-year-old Texas A&M student was declared dead at 6:50 p.m. Wednesday night after being on a ventilator with no sign of brain activity for days following the festival. Eight others died the day of the concert, and 9-year-old Ezra Blount died Monday — bringing the Astroworld death toll to ten.

At the press conference last week, the family’s lawyer, James Lassiter, confirmed that Shahani was the woman who was dropped from a gurney in a viral video on social media. One video shared by TMZ shows a seemingly unconscious young woman being transported out of the crowd on an emergency stretcher. The stretcher, which was being passed to Houston police officers, is then dropped. The woman’s head strikes the ground.

In the days that followed the concert, Scott offered to cover funeral expenses and mental health services for other concertgoers, as lawsuits against him and concert organizers continued to pile up. Scott had reached out to the Shahani family, but his offer was declined, according to the family’s attorney.

At the funeral on Tuesday, the family wore white and spoke of Bharti’s purity. Bellani, who was the first one to see Bharti in the emergency room at Houston Methodist Hospital, said no words could capture the purity of her soul.

During his eulogy, Bellani also apologized for not being able to save Shahani during the concert. Known for generosity, Bellani said he knew his cousin would forgive him.

“I know she would forgive me in a heartbeat, because Bharti is love,” he said.

After members of her family spoke, the funeral attendees gathered to place flower petals in Bharti’s casket. Riya Shahani, Bharti’s youngest sister, compared her sister to a unique flower.

“When you go to a flower shop, you always buy the prettiest flowers,” Riya said. “Well, it’s the same with life. God always picks the most amazing and good people to take with him, and you were one of them.”

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