November 27, 2008 – a day that not only Mumbaikars but the whole of the world cannot forget. The terror attack that paralysed the financial capital of India and took over 160 lives, injuring more than 350 people is etched in our memories forever.
The day when ten terrorists barged into various important places in the city like Hotel Taj, Cama Hospital, CST station etc. is when many brave officers gave their lives to protect the people.
Even today when one walks through the famous Colaba Causeway and stops at the popular Leopold Cafe, one can help but notice the bullet marks that sit there as a reminder of how low humanity can stoop. But they also serve as a reminder of what great extents humanity is capable of touching.
Ajmal Kasab, the terrorist who was captured alive was hanged to death.
Today, nine years later, as hundreds of people pay tribute at various place in the city, we look back at what these brave martyrs gave us when they gave their lives.
They gave us hope, a hope that even in the darkest times for humanity, there will always be a silver lining that will save us.
No one can forget how the city had come together in support of the martyrs who lost their lives while saving others. While the cold-blooded killing by the heartless, beastly terrorists evokes a plethora of dark emotions, it is only because of the people who came forward to help and save the victims on the gruesome day that we feel hopeful for our future.
They taught us to be vigilant, alert and report anything that is fishy.
As Mumbai burned, the hearts of scores of people across the world burnt as well. The fact that these armed terrorists could enter such a famous city through the sea and go unnoticed taught us that even the citizens are responsible for what happens to their city. We need to on the lookout for anything that is amiss and not rely on the forces that protect us, all the time.
Being fearless – one important thing that the martyrs and fighters taught us.
When you see a famous landmark blazing while hearing gunshots from inside the hotel, without having an exact idea of how many people are you exactly going to fight – you are bound to be afraid. But each and everyone who protected us that day, conquered their fear. They did not even worry about their own lives. Each and everyone of them had a family to go home to but still – they fought valiantly.
There is one thing we need to learn today. To not forget. To question. Are our security officers equipped with the best security gear today? Are we vigilant enough to notice every small suspicious activity? Do we follow a strong security procedure? Have we done anything for the families of those who lay their lives for us? Think about it.
We salute all the martyrs including but not limited to Assistant Police Sub-Inspector Tukaram Omble, who captured Kasab alive, with his bare hands, Joint Commissioner of Police Hemant Karkare, the Chief of the Mumbai Anti-Terrorism Squad, Additional Commissioner of Police Ashok Kamte, Encounter specialist Senior Inspector Vijay Salaskar, Senior Inspector Shashank Shinde, NSG Commando, Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan, NSG Commando, Hawaldar Gajendra Singh, three railway officers who died on duty and each and every person who passed away that day.
If you wish to donate to the families of martyrs at the borders and within the borders, you acn do so through Bharat Ke Veer Application or their website : Bharat Ke Veer.