26/11/2008, was one of the most dreadful days in the Indian history. Mumbai saw and experienced a terror attack that was so horrifying that it still manages to give us bad chills. Some brave hearts died in the “Battle against terror”, to save many lives. Let us take a look at all those brave men who did not give a damn about their life, and did their best to save the victims.
1. Late Hemant Karkare – Was the chief of Mumbai’s anti-terrorist squad, was shot thrice in the chest and died in action
2. Late Ashok Kamte – Additional Commissioner Of Police, was killed on the night of 26/11. His bravery was rewarded with the Ashoka Chakra on 26th January 2009
3. Late Vijay Salaskar – Senior Police Inspector and encounter specialist serving with the Mumbai police was also killed on that frightful night and was honoured with the Ashoka Chakra.
4. Late Asst. Sub-inspector Tukaram Gopal Omble – did a marvelous job by taking all the bullets from Kasab straight in and not letting him go despite the pain. If it was not done by Omble, catching the man behind his heinous act would have been a far fetched dream.
5. Late Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan – National Security Guard commando laid down his life while fighting the terrorist in 26/11 attack
6. Inspector Deepak Dhole – One of the brave policemen who ventured in the hotel that night as soon as he got the news of terrorist attack. He was armed with a small gun with 30 rounds, but fought bravely. His face was badly burnt and he couldn’t go out in the sun for 4 months after the attack
7. Sub-inspector Bhaskar Kadam – Chief detective at DB Marg police station, killed a terrorist and caught one alive on the night of 26/11. He was awarded with the President’s medal for gallantry
8. Inspector Kishore K. Shinde – This brave inspector spotted a bag full of RDX at the entrance of Oberoi trident, and took immediate action that saved hundreds of people
For what it’s worth, this man did not get any recognition for his bravery. He was subsequently transferred to another police station where he works just as any other officer.
9. Additional commissioner of police Nagappa R Mahale – The then station inspector of D.B Marg police station, was the first person to put up barricades near chowpatty. He gave the instructions to double the number of barricades when the terrorist attack was confirmed. Today he is in charge of crime records at the director general of police’s office. He is also the first Indian officer to question Kasab,
10. Sanjay Govilkar – The inspector who works for DB Marg police station belongs to the team that caught Ajmal Kasab alive. For his bravery he was awarded with the President’s Medal for gallantry
11. Captain Amitendra Kumar Singh of the National Security Guard – While fighting bravely against the terrorist, a shrapnel from a grenade hit Amitendra’s eye. A young hero with a brave heart who did not care about his life and kept his mission going
12. National Security Guard Commando Sunil Kumar Yadav – He had only one thing on his mind- “Marna ya maarna” (kill or die). A young father who says when you take a vow to protect the dignity of your country, death doesn’t look scary
13. Sanjay Manjrekar – Trained fireman and the officer-in-charge of his fire station, had seen nothing like it in his entire 20 year old career, but fought the fire bravely and helped save lives of many
14. Arun Raghunath Chitte – Vijay Salaskar’s driver for 10 years also died the same night just minutes after Salaskar’s death, by the same terrorist. A brave and honest driver who did his bit in saving the city from those horrendous terrorists
15. Vasant Prabhu – He is a brave photographer and the perfect example of putting duty ahead of everything. He captured photos of Taj during the attack, thus maintaining millions of pixels of evidence
16. Taj’s hotel staff – In an unpleasant situation like that, they gave their first preference to their customers. This proves that they did a great job and kept the guests safe and helped them in rescuing from the hotel
17. Deepak Kuntawala – Finally not just Indians, but people from different nationalities also helped to rescue people and get a grip over the situation. A London based businessman rescued 150 people from the first floor of Taj by coming up with an impromptu and smart plan
These are some of the most respectable and noble men in the recent history of Mumbai. They have not only rescued people but also saved the lives of many. We Salute them and respect them for their efforts, sacrifices and immense bravery.
18. Late Havaldar Gajender Singh – honoured with the Ashoka Chakra award- An NSG commando who gave his life during the 2008 Mumbai Attacks while securing the Nariman House during Operation Black Tornado
19. Sniffer Dog Prince was the knight in the shining armor of Mumbai police. This black Labrador helped in deactivating four live bombs and 17 hand grenades that night
The list does not end here. We know that India has more heroes than we can ever pen down; Shri. Shashank Shinde, Shri. Bapusaheb Durugade, Shri. Balasaheb Bhosale, Shri. Prakash P. More, Shri. Ambadas Pawar, Shri. Jaywant Patil, Shri. Yogesh Patil, Shri. Vijay Khandekar, Shri. M. C. Chowdhary, Shri. Rahul S. Shinde, Shri. Mukesh B. Jadhav and a lot more courageous names that are lost amid the horrendous memories of that day.