Thursday, November 27, 2008

Live Blog: Bombay Under Siege II

11.30 a.m.

St. George hospital is where the people shot at VT have been brought. Eighteen people have died when the terrorists opened fire indiscriminately in the crowded terminus, which is teeming at all times of the day. It's heart wrenching to see the people gathered outside, waiting to see if their relations are safe. A youth cries, his younger brother was a worker in Leopold Cafe. His brother, the one sobbing uncontrollably was working in nearby Delhi Durbar restaurant couldn't see him before he went home at 9.30 p.m. The next he heard is that his brother is dead. 

Sun glasses and shoes lying in the blood outside Leopold Cafe, which is sort of hep place where youngsters congregate. Today Leopold is closed, usually it is open around the week. Why did they choose Leopold and not any other restaurant around the area. Someone, a taxi driver, says that the hotel is famous, and a tourist attraction. Which may be why it has been targeted. The area is deserted. 

England cricket team has decided to return home without playing the rest of the matches in the series. Several countries have given warnings to their citizens traveling to India. I understand their concern. 

A top service official says there are 40 hostages each in Taj and Oberoi hotels - two of the most prestigious hotels in the city. The attackers are not more than 4 and came by boat at the Gateway of India. They have been identified as Pakistani citizens. The world sympathises with India but, ironically, warns its citizens against traveling to India. Well, they have their reasons. 

Smita R sent an SMS message from Delhi. I said I was at VT an hour before the shooting started. She seemed surprised, shocked. Nobody realises how important this attack is for India or for the world. Yesterday I saw "The Siege" starring Denzel Washington and Bruce Willis on Star Movies. The movie was similar in theme - terrorists attacking a city. The military is called in and they go about it like a bull in a china shop. Hub or Denzel steps in to control the situation and all is well again. 

On terrorist has been caught and is being interrogated by the police. Nothing will come out soon about the details of the attack soon. Anil S. calls in and says they should switch off the electricity, which I am against. What will it achieve if they don't even get air-conditioning in the hotel where the people are being kept hostage. Oh, when will this all end. 

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