Friday, September 25, 2009

Mumbai on and after 26/11/2008 - My take

November 27, 2008

It is 2:30 am and I am not sleepy. Few hours back, we were all having a gala time at Vijay’s Haldi, and now the celebration mood is all gone...few terrorists have attacked the city...Mandar’s friend who stays at fort is home too...they both are awake as well...we were all sitting in the living room watching the news channel, but I couldn’t see it any longer...I have called almost all my friends who stay or work in the vicinity...Mandar is usually in his office at Nariman point till 10 pm or so, but today he came home early to attend Vijay’s haldi...

A friend’s friend became one of the first victims of this attack...before entering Leopold Cafe, the terrorists fired gunshots blindly on the street when this friend’s friend who was 25 years old was going home after his MBA classes...a bullet hit him and he died on the spot...when my friend was telling me about this incident, I could hear gunshots in the background as it was all happening the next door...yes, my friend stays next to the Nariman House building where the terrorists are present at the many? We don’t know, but they all are fully loaded with arms; that is what the latest report says...

December 2, 2008

We came back this morning to Mumbai after attending Vijay’s wedding...things are almost back to normal here...most of the offices located in the areas where the attacks took place have started functioning normally...nine out of ten terrorists are dead and one is captured what happens to him, that is to be seen in the coming the meanwhile, there are so many smses doing rounds about various peace rallies happening all around...and so many people are attending them too...ask them what is the purpose of these rallies, some they are in the memory of people who lost their lives in the attack, some say they are against the government who is responsible for these attacks, some even say that they are attending as everyone else will be attending and that way, they will be able to take a glimpse of Hotel Taj too...I am going to be attending one too tomorrow – a peace reason? Well, attending a rally is better than sitting at home, not able to do anything...

December 4, 2008

Heena and I left for attending the Rally at 4 pm...our family people did not want us to attend it, we almost cancelled our plans, but our conscious did not let us rest, and we convinced people at home and left for the Gateway of India for the rally that was to start at 5 more girl joined us, she was a relative of Heena, but got down mid-way as her fiancé didn’t want her to attend the it was me and Heena...the traffic was bad, and we managed to reach Gateway by 7 30...we thought it would all be over by now, but we were had all started at that time...there were around 2.5 to 3 lacs people (I read that this morning in the newspaper) gathered around Regal Theatre holding various hoardings and sign boards and protesting against various things and people like the Government, the minister, Pakistan, terrorism, corruption etc. etc. So it was in short nowhere close to a peace rally, but well, since we were there, we decided to join one of the groups marching without any cause, and I spotted one being leaded by an old college friend...he was working for one of the newspapers, but he didn’t represent it there...he too had thought it was a peace rally, but it didn’t look like one...he was there with a group of fifteen people and we joined them...on the way, we found many people selling t-shirts, caps, candles, stickers etc. with the message – Stop Terrorism and make Mumbai safe...

We reached Taj...for me, I had spent 8 long years visiting this area time and again, but had always seen this beautiful building shining brightly, spreading smile all around with its rich heritage as Mumbai’s pride...and now The same Taj was looking dead, so was the surrounding...the police was not allowing anybody to go near the Hotel, but in that pitch dark evening, thanks to the mild light spreading around due to a wedding happening at the Radio Club, we could see the damaged dome of the Hotel that had caught fire when the terrorists were inside...a group of college students were chanting abuses for the politicians, and they got a big and good enough lecture by a reporter lady for their immature behaviour...

On the way back, we spotted many celebrities giving away interviews to media...don’t know whether to call it their concern or another publicity, we didn't click them, that was not necessary...

The above image is that of our Preamble...interestingly, the Constitution of India was enacted on November 26, 1949...Mumbai was attacked on the same day, 2008...maybe a coincidence, or is it?

one of the groups flaunting that poster at the "Peace" Rally

One of the groups Rallying peacefully..

A Promise...

Yes, such people were there too...

A college group had made this poster..

Point noted...

PS: I was not on blogger when the terror attack happened on Mumbai...and wanted to share my experience here...thus this post...


  1. It is almost one year passed by and it still seems yesterday and what has changed? Except openning 4 NSG hub across the metros, nothing noticeable I can see. One thing though, that was the last terrotist attack on Indian soil of large scale, don't know whether "they" are preparing for a bigger one(GOD bless us) or we have done something which has resulted this. Life fir se on track, only for those who have lost their near and dear ones, the memory is still fresh and for us, it is faded somewhere on the horizon:(

  2. One of the darkest days in recennt memory, brought the nation together.

    The different theories behind who was responsible for it were shocking and the timely abuse of this incident by the political parties was apalling. One theory would want us to believe that it was our very own politicians who masterminded it.

    Belive the media?

    But the country is waking up or is it not??

  3. That incident was really very bad. I remember when i saw this on television i was simply shocked. It was really sad to see this happening, i was simply not able to understand as to how they entered the city so easily..wonder what our navy was doing there. Why dont we tighten our security and borders.
    The then chief minister took Ram Gopal Varma to the Taj for terrorism tourism...that was so irresponsible. Why is that terrorist that was caught...still not hanged..our judicial system slow!!
    I really feel for those families who lost their loved one can now fill this gap. What they get by killing people??

    This is mature post neha...u handled it well!!

  4. hey neha...these photographs show the unity of mumbaikars...

  5. Those were harrowing times. And yes, i blogged about it...and was on air on Radio Canberra too. Just to let the world know about what we were going through. And i felt that the world was with us in that moment of crisis.

    Well, things could have been different. But thats the case, always !

  6. nicely written..
    i didnt know tht the preamble and the mumbai terror attacks were on the same day.. thanks for the info.. its a pity to watch slogans which attack some1 personally.. dont these guys know tht the pen is mightier than the sword??

  7. @ Mustaf, you can't say nothing has happened...don't you see politicians are benefited...their pockets and vote banks are loaded...on the face of public, few were sacked, but they are again holding some position that gives them power...and why are we depending on "them" now as well? we should care for our safety...if your building has a security guard, you still prefer to keep your eye open so that the thief does not steal anything from you...then why not to do the same for our country too? can't we be little bit more alert? why to depend on army and other forces always right?

    you are so right when you say that the whole thing is so fresh...and it will remain so...and if it doesn't then let's make sure people do not forget it easily...

    @ ZB, thank you..

  8. @ The unsure ascetic, welcome here...there were and are many theories doing rounds on this particular issue...I do not know who was the mastermind behind this, but does that matter? it happened, and it did the damage no action can ever pay off for...

    thank you for bringing up the media you know the fight could have ended much sooner if the live telecast of what is happening was not going on all the time? media for increasing its TRP, was showing each and every detail of the spots and each and every movement of our police and army...this helped the terrorists to fight for a longer time as they anyways had enough arms and explosives to last for many days...the terrorists kept getting the info about our moves and they kept playing their cards increasing the death troll...

  9. @ Nazish, they entered as our people valued money more than the lives of hundreds...RGV episode was again according to me blown out of was unnecessarily made a political issue which was not I mentioned in one of the comments above for Mustaf, we should be more careful too...what do they get out of killing people? well, i feel they ain't interested in killing individuals, but they want to make our country weak and we are giving them an opportunity to do so...about Kasab still alive, well, the judicial system is indeed slow, but more than that it has been controlled by the politicians again...if we hang him, there will be pressure from the UN, other super power countries etc...and that time they will very conveniently forget what they did to saddam hussain...they hanged him without declaring the date and time of his execution...3 people I know have lost their lives in the terror attack, and yes, nobody can ever fill that gap..

  10. @ Asit Dhal, yeah, they do show unity, and much more than that if you look at them closely

    @ Kavi, I read all your posts on the terror attack this morning...and do understand what you must have felt, we all felt then...the world was with us too...

    the rage is so much inside so many of us, that I failed to pen that down here to say the least... there are so many things I wanna say, so much more to express, but I will surely try to do so if I am able to convey my feelings thru words...

  11. @ Vishnu, hope people to get the message that pen is mightier than sword...I went to that rally to look for some answers, but it left me disappointed when I saw all those things...

    @ The unsure ascetic, or AS, I just now checked your changed the display name so got confused...I take "welcome here" back..

  12. I feel a rage inside me whenevr I remebr that attack , and when for every investigation, human right people come up and blame our machinery, where are they when so many people are getting killed?

    This thought was beautifully brought out by BLACK.
    and to think that all this happened because of some corrupt people..yes I blame them more than the terrorist even..because criminal will always try do a crime, its upon the machinery to stop they allowed them.

  13. Indeed a good post, Neha.
    I am not in favour of hanging Kasab, actually. He was a mere pawn in a cynical game being played to divide India and to create fear and chaos. Hanging Kasab will not address the real problem here.
    The real problem is terrorist activities being controlled from across the border and also why the young and disillusioned are finding it attractive to join these terrorists?

    Until we address these issues, there is every chance 26/11 may happen again, unfortunatley.
    The preamble brought tears to my eyes. Let us all unite and make India strong and invincble.Jai Hind!

  14. A very nice post Neha, I wrote a long comment but am not sure if it went through...will see if you got it:)

  15. that was a sad and tragic incidence..
    Wt is now paining me is that, still our people dont know how it was exactly plotted...Only one Kasab got arrested who is atthis end.. The masterminds.. They are still roaming around free... Maybe plotting another tragedy...!!

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  17. @ antarman, the blame game will always go on...that way only the political parties will I mentioned in one of my comments earlier, corruption is one of the major reasons behind those and most of the attacks...

    @ Vinz, the masterminds are indeed roaming around free...but even if you catch them, ten new masterminds will be born...the day we start treating our country as home - we means we all including the politicians, bureaucrats and each n every citizen of india - that time the masterminds won't be able to do anything even if they all come together...

  18. @ panorama, to be honest, the thought of writing a post on 26/11 had been playing in my mind for a long time...when I went to visit one of the universities, I was waiting for an official as I had a meeting with him...while waiting again I was thinking of this incident and my eyes fell on this preamble...this was one of the things we had mugged up while studying law, but i had forgotten the date of its enactment...when I saw that there and the date mentioned there, all the rage came back and I wrote this post yesterday itself and posted it...

    and Kasab issue, well I agree hanging him will not solve our problems, but keeping him alive will prove the impotency of our legal and judicial system...a punishment and timely action is required so are many other things like fighting not only against terrorism, but corruption too...and about young joining the terrorist camps, well you must be aware that the terrorists who attacked Mumbai did that for 1.25 rupees...that is again secondary, but how did they get access to our country? there were helped out by our own people...they got sim cards, transport etc...I saw on one of the news channels, one fellow made a fake driver's license for kasab for 5000 rupees recently...some news channel carried out ths operation...dunno to what extend it was true, but isn't it sad?

    oh I will cut it here, or i will go on n on...all my comments if combined together, they are gonna be three times longer than my post...

  19. That was really a disheartening news.. it still churns my stuck when i think about it.. that its a sad reality...

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  20. Neha, I think he should be punished for sure but I guess I am just against the death penalty.
    Of course the real enemy is corruption and the fact that people can be bought so easily in our country.
    Anyway, a though provoking post:)

  21. Neha,
    thanks for your thoughtful comment on blog, i agree with you that our vote is wasted, but we have to learn to vote, and educate each other on this, so regarding this i have written one post, please go through it.I have wrtten lot on this topic but here i am giving you only one link, if you clik on elections 2009 in labels you can see all the post. here is the one link

  22. @ workhard, welcome here...thank you for your is indeed a very sad reality, which we all can change if we come together and decide to fight against terrorism..

    @ Panorama, there are many people who are against death penalty... but certain acts deserve it...and coruption se to tauba...

    @ sm, I read the post and commented on your blog too...thank you very much for sharing it...

  23. Neha, awesome post girl!
    How hard it must have been for you guys to live amidst all those gun-shots! Spine Chilling!!

  24. Neha,

    I am speechless, watching this horror on TV, one can imagine the people's plight. Having lost loved ones, known ones, and yet wake up the next morning and behave as if everything was OK and take pride in calling ourselves resilient. Appaling!
    We are so tolerant and used to taking things our stride.....

  25. @ Shruti, thank was indeed very difficult to see tht all...

    @ insignia, we have gotta be tolerant otherwise we cant survive as we do not want to be alert nor wanna take our responsibility...the attitude of people has not changed as yet...fury, rage and anger lasted for few days and now everything has died down...but, we still expect and hope for a better tomorrow...but until we work towards it, we will never see it...

  26. Very sad. The Government should have been more aware of terrorist activities and never let this happen. My heart goes to the families of those who died and also who suffered mentally and/or physically. We were visting India at that time and glued to the TV. One irritating part was the TV stations were completing as to who brings the "exclusive" news as opposed to informing the public what was happening.

  27. Neha,

    These were the sad moments!! GOD BLESS US!!

  28. Thanks for your kind words...really lucky to have you as my friend ya....cheers and best wishes always...

  29. @ SG, the information the news channels gave helped the terrorists more than the was all indeed very sad..

    @ swatantra, very true..

  30. @ R. Ramesh, thanks buddy..

    @ Apanatva, thank you..

  31. gr8 2 hear fm u...buddy friend...cheers

  32. Hi,

    I have displayed the awards at my blog... Thanks for making me feel happy and making my blog look beautiful.. Appne hamare blog pe chaar chaand laga diye..

    Iskee khoobsutri ko dekiyee aake... Thanks again!!

  33. You heard gunshots? That was all happening next door? It must've been one hell of an experience.
    Well, it's been almost one year already and all we are talking about nowadays is Rakhi Sawant ka Swayamvar. And Abdul Kasab is still enjoying Indian hospitality. The only news we hear about him is that he is demanding tooth paste and basmati rice and what not. Irony at its best!

    P.S. I've written an article regarding terrorism under the title, "Iron lady vs. Plastic man." Kindly read it and let me know what you think.

  34. Karthik, will surely read your post soon...

    thank u for your comments...u r right...people have forgotten the attacks, or rather, they have conveniently assumed that such a thing will not happen views on almost all the aspects is there in form of comments...thank u for dropping by..

  35. Hey Neha, that was indeed an interesting read.. the hype u created at my blog was wrth it ;)

  36. hey thanks Vipul..I am glad you liked it...n btw, i was planning to write a post on the same topic too; but since you are already writing it, i might as well post the link of your post here na :D