A Prayer for Mumbai
What a tragedy that’s unfolding in Mumbai. The financial center of India is under siege. Terrorist outfits equipped with modern arms and ammunition entered several prominent establishments like the Taj Mahal Hotel, Hotel Oberoi and Trident, Chattrapati Shivaji Rail Terminus and wreaked mayhem! My heart cries out for all those impacted by this senseless tragedy. The unknown innocents, the brave policemen who died answering the call of duty, visitors to India who had come for business or pleasure – the number of deceased has crossed the 100 mark as I write this.
This hits home to me on several fronts. We were in both the Taj and Oberoi just a couple of weeks ago (a picture of the magnificient hotel hangs in my office!). Having lived in Mumbai for several years, its hard for me to see one of the icons of Mumbai on fire. Being the son of a police officer, its tough to see lives of brave officers being lost in this hour of tragedy. Having disembarked several hundred times at the train terminus, I can mentally visualize the scene that must have unfolded.
Why did this happen?
The Indian economy and global influence has been on the ascent over the past few years. The attack on the heart of the business establishment is an an attack on the Indian economy. As India integrates further with the western world, there are forces that want to see it fail. As India becomes more attractive to visitors from abroad, negative influences want to nip that in the bud.
They will not succeed!
Ultimately, the resilience of Mumbai, the strength of Indian democracy and the ties of global integration will prevail. It will most certainly be not on a straight line, but the path to success is clear. This is the time for Indian government to take strong action on the security front while continuing to enhance India’s global role. In this context, the US-India partnership will be strengthened more than ever before.
I pray that the current situation comes to an end without any further loss of innocent life.