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26/11 Mumbai attacks: Venkaiah Naidu, Amit Shah lead tributes; Israelis demand justice for victims

November 26 marks the 12th anniversary of the terrorist attacks in Mumbai.

By: Express Web Desk | Mumbai |
November 26, 2020 12:44:12 pm
Mumbai attack mastermind, Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), commander Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, Mumbai attack, Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD), Pakistan, case of terrorism financing, UN designated individualSmoke is seen billowing out of the ground and first floor of the Taj Hotel in south Mumbai following the 26/11 terror attacks in 2008. (PTI)

Paying tribute to those who had lost their lives in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks in 2008, Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu Thursday said it was time for the world to come together to isolate nations supporting and sponsoring terrorism. “I pay my tributes to the martyrs of 26/11 Mumbai terror attack. Nation will always remember their valour and sacrifice,” the Vice President Secretariat tweeted quoting Naidu.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah also paid tribute to those who had lost their lives in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks in 2008. “I pay tribute to those who lost their lives in the Mumbai 26/11 terror attacks and convey condolences to their families. Heartfelt tributes to the brave security personnel who faced the terrorists in these attacks. The nation will always be grateful to your bravery and sacrifice,” Shah tweeted in Hindi.

November 26 marks the 12th anniversary of the terrorist attacks in Mumbai. Ten militants of the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) carried out 12 coordinated shooting and bombing attacks over 12 days across the city. At least 166 people, including six Jews at the Chabad House and nine militants, were killed, and over 300 others injured in the attacks which began on November 26, 2008.

Israelis are holding ceremonies to pay their respects to the victims of the attacks. Israelis and Indian students paid respects to the victims in Jerusalem, Rehovot and Tel Aviv on Wednesday, while ceremonies are planned in Beersheva and Eilat on Thursday. A virtual ceremony on Zoom is also planned for Thursday at 8 pm Israel time (11.30 pm IST). Hundreds have registered to take part in the event. Israelis in Eilat have requested that a memorial square be built for the victims of the Mumbai attacks.

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The United States also said it is committed to hold the perpetrators of the heinous 26/11 terror attacks accountable to ensure justice for the victims. “Through the Rewards for Justice programme, we seek to ensure that all those responsible for this heinous attack face justice,” US State Department deputy spokesman Cale Brown said on Wednesday. “On the 12th anniversary of the 26/11 Mumbai attack, the US reaffirms its commitment to holding the perpetrators accountable and ensuring justice for the victims, including six Americans. Standing alongside our Indian partners, we remain resolute in the fight against terrorism,” Brown said.

The Rewards for Justice programme is offering a reward of up to $5 million for information about the individuals responsible for these attacks. Key members of this heinous plot remain at large and the investigation remains active and ongoing. This reward offer extends to any individual who bears responsibility for this act of terror, the State Department said. Meanwhile, Indian Americans on Wednesday held a memorial gathering in front of the US Capitol to pay respects to the victims of the Mumbai terror attacks.

The Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus, the Oberoi Trident, the Taj Mahal Hotel, Leopold Cafe, Cama Hospital and the Nariman House Jewish community centre, now renamed Nariman Light House, were some of the places targeted by the terrorists. The then Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) chief Hemant Karkare, Mumbai’s Additional Police Commissioner Ashok Kamte, Senior Police Inspector Vijay Salaskar and Assistant Sub-Inspector (ASI) Tukaram Omble were among those killed in the attack. NSG commando Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan was also killed while fighting the terrorists.

Nine terrorists were later killed by the security forces and Ajmal Kasab was the only one who was captured alive. He was hanged four years later on November 21, 2012.

(With inputs from agencies)

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