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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Remembering the Heroes of 26/11 as the Second anniversary approaches

Comics are an integral part of every child’s growth – in our days we had the Ambulimama (chandamama) / Amar chitra katha.  Today’s kid are obsessed with Jetix of Walt Disney.  Tom & Jerry would perhaps remain the ever watched one, then there are Spiderman, Superman, Batman and more – have you heard of kargilman and Aditya Bakshi.  Or for that matter do you still remember  the illustrious  Bhaskar Kadam, Hemant Bawdhankar and Sanjay Govilkar ?
                    the team of Kadam, Bawdhankar and Sanjay Govilkar and Tukaram Omble (below)
The second anniversary of the day that shook the Nation exposing the holes in our security cover is fast approaching.  How much the Nation remembers the heroes who savoured the Nation is too well known…………….  But for the brave Asst SI Tukaram Omble who obstinately took upon the marauding assassin and captured him, the entire proceedings would have gone in an altogether direction.  That Ashoka Chakra winner sacrificed his life to provide valuable evidence in fighting the grave attack on the Nation.  He is no more…. Hundreds were killed and more numbers wounded.  All lives are invaluable – some notable persons who were killed include : Assistant Police Sub-Inspector Tukaram Omble  who succeeded in capturing a terrorist alive, with his bare hands;     Hemant Karkare, ATS Chief ; Ashok Kamte , ACP Mumbai; Vijay Salaskar, renowned sharp shooter and Encounter specialist ; Shashank Shinde, Sr Inspector;             Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan, NSG Commando; Hawaldar Gajendra Singh, NSG Commando.   “Do not come up, I will handle them”, were probably the last words which Major Unnikrishnan told his men as he was hit by bullets while engaging well armed terrorists inside the Taj Hotel.
But the desperado  Ajmal Kasab lives to see more years at such a high cost for the administration.  Legal issues continue to plague as the State is trying to be fair on that incorrigible criminal.  The legal system is extended beyond a point as 11000 page charge sheet was filed for waging war against India and killing its citizens.  Kasab was convicted of all 86 charges on 3 May 2010. He was found guilty of murder for directly killing seven people, conspiracy to commit murder for the deaths of the 166 people killed in the three-day terror siege, waging war against India, causing terror, and of conspiracy to murder two high-ranking police officers. On 6 May 2010, he was sentenced to death by hanging.  Now the next process of appeal is on and would take years or perhaps decades to conclude.   State would continue to spend crores on him.
Unnikrishnan f/o Maj Sandeep Unnikrishnan

The 2008 Mumbai attacks referred to as Nov 26th or simple 26/11 was a coordinated attack of shooting and bombing across the Business capital of India.  IANS reports that  K. Unnikrishnan, father of commando Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan who was killed in the Mumbai terror attack, is on a month-long cycle journey that will end at the Gateway of India Nov 26.   This the special way of the army officer to pay tribute to his son and other martyrs.   The journey began at India Gate monument in New Delhi on Oct 26 and covers a distance of around 1300 km in 24 days.  
He says that the  purpose of the tour is not to remind people of the gruesome attacks on Mumbai but to remind them of the sacrifices made by our soldiers.  Brave words indeed from some one who lost his son at prime youth.  As a special tribute, Unnikrishnan and his wife  have planned l stay at the Taj Nov 26-27 before returning to Bangalore.   There are other heroes who continue to serve the Nation.  They include policeman Sanjay Govilkar, railway constable Jillu Yadav and announcers Bablu Kumar and Vishnu Zende, who saved hundreds of lives, are still at their job - more resolutely than before.
Aditya Bakshi has tried in his novel way to glorify the martyr who could run faster than a speeding bullet  -  Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan  a real-life hero in the 52 page comic book ‘braveheart of Mumbai’.  This is a part of the series that began in 2008 with a comic on Kargil martyr Capt Vikram Batra followed by one on Col N J Nair.  Aditya, son of Major General (Retd) G D Bakshi, feels it is very important for everyone to know about these real-life super heroes.
Love the Nation
S Sampathkumar.

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