Mumbai memorial service marks fourth anniversary of 26/11

Last Updated: Mon, Nov 26, 2012 09:41 hrs

Mumbai: A memorial service was held here on Monday on the occasion of the fourth anniversary of the 2008 Mumbai attacks.

Family members remembered their lost loved ones at the solemn event.

Ten militants arrived on the Mumbai shoreline in a dinghy on Nov 26, 2008, before splitting into four groups and embarking on a killing spree. They held off elite commandos for up to 60 hours in two luxury hotels and a Jewish centre in the city. 166 people were killed.

Pakistan national Mohammad Ajmal Kasab was the enduring image of the bloody assault, which traumatised India and raised fears of copycat attacks on foreign cities. Pictures of the boyish gunman wearing a black T-shirt and toting an AK-47 rifle as he strode through Mumbai's train station were published around the world.

Kasab was executed on the morning of November 21.

Family members of the victims welcomed the government's decision to hang Kasab, but cautioned that the wounds of 2008 attacks would never be fully healed.

"I would request the government not to consider this (hanging of Ajmal Kasab) an end to 26/11, because I don't think 26/11 is ever going to end and Mumbai is ever going to forget and if the government forgets then it becomes our responsibility to not let them forget," said Divya, daughter of police officer, Vijay Salaskar, who was gunned down during the attacks.

Salaskar, chief of Mumbai's Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS), Hemant Karkare and another senior police officer Ashok Kamte, were killed during a shootout with militants near the Cama and Albless Hospital.

Hemant Karkare was awarded the Ashok Chakra, India's highest peacetime gallantry award for his bravery during the attacks.

Karkare's wife, Kavita Karkare said that the security in Mumbai was still not efficient and the blasts in the city after the 2008 attacks and in the Pune city were reminders of the evident shortfalls.

"Bomb blasts are still happening. We need evidence that Mumbai is completely secure but that is not the case. Even after 26/11, there have been blasts in Pune, in Zaveri Bazar and Dadar in Mumbai. The security system should be tightened and we are not giving the required attention," said Kavita Karkare.

A bomb blast at the popular German Bakery in the city of Pune killed nine and also wounded 57 in 2010. (ANI)

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