26/11 Mumbai Attacks: The night no one can forget
On 26/11/08, then 21-year-old Divya Salaskar was planning to go on a drive with her father.
Both were at home during the day. But when she didn't hear his voice for long, she came out of her room, only to learn her cop father had left because shooting had been reported.
"Encounter specialist" Vijay Salaskar never returned home. Divya couldn't even say said bye.
Four days of terror in Mumbai
November 26, 2008, marked the beginning of four days of terror in Mumbai. Till November 29, 10 LeT terrorists who had stormed the City of Dreams carried out coordinated bomb blasts and shootings.
According to then Maharashtra CM Vilasrao Deshmukh, 15 policemen were martyred, including ASI Tukaram Omble, ATS Chief Hemant Karkare, ACP Ashok Kamte, and senior inspectors Vijay Salaskar and Shashank Shinde.
Nine years on, families of martyrs struggle to move on
Divya has since completed her Masters and runs an HR firm. "Whenever I miss (father), I YouTube his videos. It's painful but you see him breathing, living."
Vaishali Ombale has found another way of distracting herself from her father Tukaram's death: after completing her M.Ed, she keeps herself busy in tutoring students.
When security personnel are martyred, it's the entire nation's loss, she says.
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President Kovind pays his tributes
On the ninth anniversary of the Mumbai terror attacks, we mourn with the families that lost their dear ones. And we recall with gratitude the security personnel who gave their lives in the battle against evil #PresidentKovind— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) November 26, 2017
Then there were the civilians trapped in the middle
The attacks were traumatic for survivors too. "I remember every second of that day," says then 10-year-old Devika Rotawan, who got shot at CST.
She identified Ajmal Kasab as one of the terrorists.
Dilip Mehta, who was at the Taj, was the first to be rescued. "I had to undergo counseling for six months."
Dr PN Vaswani, another survivor, says security is still lacking.
Mumbai Police dedicates 9th anniversary to martyrs
Mumbai Police has dedicated the ninth anniversary of the attacks to the martyrs of that day: various events will be organized, including a 'Salutation Ceremony' at Shahid Smarak and felicitation of their family members in the presence of CM Devendra Fadnavis.
People are also expected to pay tributes at the sites targeted: CST, Taj Hotel, Cafe Leopold and St Xavier's College, among others.
The police force have finally acquired new weapons, armor
It took a long time for the state police to acquire new body armor, but it finally happened recently. Maharashtra Police got 4,600 bullet-proof jackets along with advanced gadgets.
Most of these would go to its special forces formed after the deadly 26/11 attacks.
This came after a CAG report said Maharashtra Police lacked resources and infrastructure needed for carrying out daily responsibilities.
Mumbai 26/11 Attacks
Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus
ACP Ashok Kamte
ASI Tukaram Omble
ATS Chief Hemant Karkare
CM Devendra Fadnavis
Dr PN Vaswani
Maharashtra CM Vilasrao Deshmukh
Till November 29