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Mumbai and Terror: The Day After

Categories: South Asia, India, Law, Media & Journalism, War & Conflict

An attack of this scale has surprised the entire country. While India is no stranger to bomb blasts and attacks by terrorists, a prolonged hostage situation at prominent landmarks is a complete surprise. The last hostage situation that was covered this extensively was the hijacking of a flight in 1999 [1].

At Mumbai Metblogs [2], ideasmith rounds up the events of a day and more.

Later this morning, there was a sudden buzz that a fresh round of firing had opened at C.S.T. station and that hostages had been taken. This turned out to be a false rumour. Apparantly someone had heard some noise that sounded to them like gunfire and panicked.

Just ten minutes back, I heard what sounded like a blast. I jumped but I ignored it. Two minutes later it was followed by another one. I looked up to see if anyone else had heard it. Apparantly no one else had. I was just debating whether to go back to my desk (in one corner of the office so I could have been the only one to hear it, being closest) or tell someone (and risk starting another panic wave). Upstairs someone else had heard it too and called us to check it out. We raced to the terrace, hearts thundering. It turned out to be nothing more than the daily workers going about their deed at the construction site next door. Whhhewwwww.

On Twitter, prempanicker [3] is providing constant updates. In a sense, it captures the high levels of confusion. Every two hours, there is a an announcement of sorts that things are under control, but right after, more gunbattle and blasts are reported.

Prem Twitter [4]

code clicks n caffeine [5] posts photographs from the last two days – taken by various people and from various sources. John P Matthew [6] has been liveblogging the events in Mumbai, with reflections on people's reactions and the media's coverage.

At the office where I am there are excited voices, raised in concern, about attacks at VT station through which I have to pass. Somebody says that in the lane downstairs terrorists were firing indiscriminately. There's panic in the building and a colleague is spreading more terror with his uncontrolled blurting of what little he knows. He gets too excited unnecessarily.

Kunal at Live's Short Live it Up [7] has been liveblogging relentlessly as well –

# GPS Satellite phones found on terrorists. Another phone with foreign SIM card found near Taj hotel
# Terrorists hijacked fishing boards
# All Terrorists in Taj hotel have been Eliminated! [23:25]
# NSG sources say one injured terrorist still holed up at Taj hotel
# More hostages rescued from Nariman House. 15-17 people are out of Nariman house now
# 25 blasts at Taj hotel in last 24 hours
# Fresh round of firing from Taj hotel’s far end

As is obvious, confusion appears to reign supreme, and there's very little clarity on the status of the terrorists and hostage situation.