10 things about the Mumbai blasts

So far, this is what we know:

1. Dadar is a congested area. Nationalist party, Shiv Sena have their HQ there. Dadar station is also a railway hub where people change trains to get home from work.
2. Zaveri Bazaar is a market which is located in South Mumbai, like Opera House area. Lots of people travel in rush hour from there. Zaveri Bazaar also houses many Gujarati businesses.
3. Opera House is a affluent area in South Mumbai. These attacks target everyone. Not just the poor.
4. Today is Kasab’s birthday, the only captured gun-slinging terrorist from the 2008 attacks.
5. Hillary Clinton is expected in India next week. Pakistan’s Foreign Minister is expected by the end of the month also.
6. The two groups – Indian Mujahaddin & Lashkar e Toiba have been fingered. It seems that two members of the former were arrested yesterday in Mumbai.
7. Pakistan’s President & PM must be tense at the moment. Hoping India keep their calm. They’ve expressed their sympathy.
8. Like I said previously, Pakistan doesn’t have a handle on its own security. Left hand doesn’t know what right hand does. Wouldn’t be surprised if this is the work of a sleeper unit that’s now termed as being ‘Indian’.
9. Attacks often give rise to communal tension, esp in Mumbai. Like last time, all communities will stand together, I’m sure. In 2008, Mumbai’s Muslims didn’t even allow for the killed terrorists to be buried in their graveyards!
10. More to follow…

Massacre in Mumbai

The scenes that we are witnessing in Mumbai this evening should be flashed across the world to bring home the impact of terrorism, as they have to my home in London. We’re shocked by the images we are seeing – a policeman nursing a fresh bullet wound, the domes of the Taj Palace Hotel engulfed in flames, news about  40 hostages being held, and news reports suggest that as I write there are 16 active terrorist units raging in Mumbai tonight.

Given that India over the past 30 years has probably been the biggest victim of global terrorism, there’ll be a volley of questions asked and fingers pointed tomorrow morning asking how the political command structure and security services failed to detect such a coordinated and massive attack. Before the politicking and blame game commences, I’d like to urge the commentariat to consider the impact on ordinary Mumbaikars and Indians.

There’s a real & human cost – families have suffered losses and pain that is unimaginable; lives have been changed for once and for all.

We know that the resilience of Indian people during previous attacks and havoc has remained steadfast; and live in the hope that as the sun rises on the Gateway of India, tomorrow morning, that Mumbaikars hold together, as they have previously.

From London, we want you to know that we stand shoulder to shoulder with you in these testing times.