November 28, 2008 9:04:19 pm
Security forces on Saturday ended the terror siege of Mumbai killing four terrorists in Taj hotel, the last theatre of action where 22 bodies were found, after 60 hours of intense battle with the band of ultras who struck the country’s financial capital killing 183 people.
“All operations are over. The NSG has formally reported that the operations are complete and now Taj, Oberoi and Nariman House are being sanitised. There are no more terrorists now in Mumbai. All have been liquidated or captured alive,” M L Kumawat, Special Secretary in the Union Home Ministry, said in Delhi.
The magnitude of the attack by suspected Lashkar-e-Toiba elements, who are believed to have come by the sea route from Karachi, could be gauged from the statement of Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra R R Patil who said with the ammunition the terrorists had, they could have killed 5,000 people.
NSG Chief J K Dutt, who announced the end of ‘Operation Black Tornado’ in which his commandos took on the heavily-armed ultras, said in all they eliminated eight terrorists–four in Taj, two in Trident-Oberoi and two in Nariman House. Another terrorist was killed by the Mumbai police on Wednesday night while one was captured alive.
The elimination of the four terrorists in Taj came on Saturday morning after intense battle between the commandos, who believed there was a lone gunman holding out, and the terrorists who kept exploding grenades at periodic intervals.
The security forces rescued 250 people in Oberoi, 300 in Taj and 12 families of 60 people in Nariman House.
Dutt said five bodies were recovered alongwith those of some terrorists in Taj and there was indication that these five were killed in the initial part of the hostage crisis.
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