Bade Shehar Ki Chotti Si Baat
A year ago, some barbaric ... people (it's hard for me to think of them as humans, to be honest) entered India, terrorized us and held our Country to ransom for something close to 72 hours.
The Mumbai Indians came through as they always have in any other situation of similar proportions. But 26/11 will go down as one day we would rather forget but will not forget.
I don't know whether I believe in god. I think I like to because it's comforting and convenient. It makes it a helluva lot easier to put it all onto someone *named* god for me I guess. But all I'll say is thanks to god. Thanks for saving those who did survive. Thanks for shaking us up. Although I really don't think this attack was the way to do it. Thanks for making us trying to shake off our *chalta hai* attitude. Let's hope we don't forget.
I remember watching the India England match that night, with my Dad. We watched the match, not sure if saw it fully-given it was a Day Night Match, switched off the TV without bothering to see the news one last time-something we usually did. Only next morning did I see the Newspaper Headlines-a glance really, before I headed for school.
I never realized how significant 26/11 would become.
In school the next morning, we were discussing the news in our Sociology Class. One of my friends, Smriti, said something about an attack in Mumbai. In India we've kinda gotten used to random blasts in our major cities-I figured it'd be something similar to what happened before. After all my family and I had narrowly missed attacks in Delhi at 2 places on the same day back in October 2005.
When I walked back from my bus to my home, I saw my mother standing, waiting for me. Something she never did. She told me about all that had happened and how serious it all actually was. One of our relatives was trapped in the Trident but had reached home safe. Thank god (?)
I remember being glued to the Television all day and night. It was traumatizing just watching it! To actually be there... the magnitude of which seemed impossible for me to figure out.
My parents didn't want me watching the news at all, fearing it may have a deep psychological impact on me. But then, human nature is one that is curious beyond limits.
This feeling-one where you'd think "Oh well, it looks like it's all gonna end by this hour, so that's good"-I think is safe to say, was felt by most (at least ones watching it unfold on the television!)
Except, it seemed never ending!
Stories of heroism spread. From the Chai Walah near CST, the Doctors, the Hotel Staff to the NSG Commandos. Our hearts warmed with those stories of courage and mettle.
Candle light vigils all over the country ensued. The public was angry. We wanted action. Our legendary *Chalta Hai* attitude looked like it was reaching it's demise. The BigB created headlines when on his blog he said he pulled out his licensed .32 revolver, loaded, under his pillow for a very disturbed sleep. The sight of Baby Moshe brought tears to our eyes. Stupid comments from Politicians only made us more furious. This guy-Ajmal Kasab-became the most talked about individual. Today he is also, more secure perhaps-with about Rs. 31 Crores spent to keep him alive, compared to normal Indians.But this event [calling it an event seems to belittle the enormity of it all actually] made us proud of our Defense Forces-the Police, the NSG...
Today, it has ended. It's been a year since it is over. But where are we?
PS-I used a picture of the Taj Mahal Hotel in Mumbai in it's glory. That's the memory I'd rather live with.