Mumbai: The heroes and victims of the 26/11 terror attacks that left 166 people, including 28 foreigners, dead were solemnly remembered at various commemorative events held here on Thursday. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis led the main commemoration at the 26/11 memorial in the Police Gymkhana on Thursday morning, along with his cabinet colleagues and senior police officers.
He paid homage to the policemen who lost their lives during the 60-hour long operation that began on the night of November 26, 2008 when 10 Pakistani gunmen laid siege to south Mumbai. Besides Fadnavis, DGP Pravin Dixit, Mumbai Police Commissioner Ahmad Javed and other police officials, families of the martyrs and others who were killed in action were present.
Similar memorial services are being held during the day at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST), the Hotel Taj Mahal Palace, Cama Hospital and at Girgaum Chowpatty where braveheart Tukaram Ombale was killed while helping nab one of the terrorists - M. Ajmal Kasab - alive early on November 27. To mark the seventh anniversary, Mumbai Congress president and a local municipal corporator named a square after home guards officer, Mukesh Jadhav, who fell to a terrorist s bullet near St. George Hospital on 26/11.
Jadhav, 23, was on patrol duty between the main and local railway lines at CST when he suddenly came face-to-face with one of the terrorists who shot him in the chest. Despite being shot, he stumbled to inform the police about the attacks which resulted in saving lives of hundreds of unaware commuters. On Wednesday evening, as part of the Global Peace Initiative, celebrities joined a Walk For Peace along with children in central Mumbai and paid homage to the heroes and victims of the 26/11 attacks.
Ten Pakistani terrorists sneaked into Mumbai from the Arabian Sea late evening on November 26, 2008 and targeted 12-odd prime locations in south Mumbai spread barely over a five-km area and created mayhem for 60 hours.
The targets were: Colaba, CST, Leopold Cafe, Chabad House, Hotel Taj Mahal Palace, Hotel Trident Oberoi, near Metro Cinema, Cama and Albless Hospital, behind the BMC headquarters, Mazagaon Docks area, a taxi bomb near Vile Parle, and at Girgaum Chowpatty. Among the security officials martyred in gunfights with the terrorists included then ATS chief Hemant Karkare, shootout specialist Vijay Salaskar, Additional Police Commissioner Ashok Kamte, API Tukaram Ombale, Senior Inspector Shashank Shinde, commandos Major Sanjeep Unnikrishnan and Gajendra Singh, a trooper, both of the elite NSG.