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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

BLOODY HELL!

80 KILLED IN MUMBAI TERRORISTS SPRAY BULLETS AND FEAR ACROSS CITY 3 TOP COPS KILLED

 MUMBAI, INDIA'S largest city and financial nerve centre, came under a terrorist attack of unprecedented ferocity on Wednesday evening. The city was under siege at the time of going to press. A dozen landmark locations, including the storied Mumbai landmarks like the CST station and the Taj and Oberoi hotels, Napean Sea Road, Bombay Hospital, Metro Cinema — all came under savage assault from terrorists who used grenades and guns. A petrol pump near Gateway Of India too was blown up in a grenade attack.Gun battles between the police and attackers were raging at the time this article was written.At least 80 people were reported killed. Two terrorists were also killed in a gun battle at Girgaum, Chowpatty. Some terrorists were holed up inside city's famous landmarks — the Taj and Oberoi hotels.In fact,the Oberoi lobby was on fire. Many CEOs, including the global CEO of a leading consumer goods manufacturer and some leading bankers, were reportedly inside these hotels. In fact, as many as 15 at the Taj and 40 at the Oberoi were held hostage.
    'Encounter specialist' Vijay Salaskar and ATS chief Hemant Karkare were reportedly killed in the shootouts. Another IPS officer of ACP rank Ashok Kamte is also reported to have been killed. There were no official confirmations of these reports at the time of writing. Late in the night, there were reports that the National Security Guard (NSG) had been deployed.There are also unconfirmed reports that the army might be deployed.The terrorists were looking for people with British and US passports, according to a foreign tourist quoted in a television report.
    Sounds of explosion and firing could be heard from the Times of India building, which is opposite the CST station, late in the evening.The building was sealed off as people ran across the street in panic.
Attacks bring back memories of 1993 blasts
    THIS series of attacks has left the city completely shell-shocked, reviving painful memories of the 1993 serial blasts. What really caught the state unawares is the new modus operandi adopted by the terror groups. Instead of the more familiar suicide bomb attacks, the terrorists took over the streets, hotels, hospitals and station, catching everybody by surprise. They fired indiscriminately, killing many in the process.
    The first incident took place at around 10.25 pm when bullets, apparently from automatic weapons, were fired at police and paramilitary forces outside the Taj Hotel in south Mumbai. Around the same time shooting was reported at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus police station in which six people were injured.
    Police immediately cordoned off the CST Railway Terminus, a crowded place at this time of the evening, and stopped entry of people. Unidentified gunmen also opened fire with automatic weapons and caused explosions at Cafe Leopold on Colaba Causeway. In all, the firing and explosions at Cafe Leopold and inside CST stations killed two to three persons and injured around 30.
    The attack at CST station was reported to be the most daring with gunmen reportedly carrying the AK-47 opening fire at an extreme
ly busy hour. Train services to CST were immediately suspended. A few minutes later a blast was reported at Santa Cruz station and another at a petrol pump near Gateway of India.
    According to police officials and eyewitness accounts, at least two terrorists were holed up inside the CST station for around two hours.
    The worst hit was hotel Oberoi. A group of terrorists blew up bombs and took position at different locations in this 35-storied hotel. Two persons armed with automatic weapons and hand grenades are reportedly holding up inside the Hotel.
    The Maharashtra government, meanwhile, issued a high alert all across the state. The government has also decided to deploy special forces on all key locations. The state director general of police AN Roy late tonight indicated that a couple of terrorists have been holed up in Oberoi Hotel located at the tony Nariman Point.
    Chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh has cut short his Kerala visit and is returning to Mumbai. Mr Deshmukh spoke to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh informing him about the situation in the state capital.
    So far, though, no terrorist group has claimed any responsibility, the police suggested an involvement of "major terror" group behind what appears to be "well thought of attacks".











THE ICONIC TAJ HOTEL ON FIRE AFTER A BLAST

IT’S WAR ON MUMBAI

NIGHTMARE: Taj, Oberoi, CST, Santa Cruz Airport, Colaba And 2 Hospitals Among 8 Places Attacked By Terrorists, Killing 78 And Injuring 900 | Three Senior Police Officers, Including ATS Chief Hemant Karkare, Killed | 40 People, Including Foreigners, Taken Hostage | Firing By Terrorists Continues At Hotels, Cama & GT

Mumbai: In one of the most violent terror attacks on Indian soil, Mumbai came under an unprecedented night attack as terrorists used heavy machine guns, including AK-47s, and grenades to strike at the city's most high-profile targets—the hyper-busy CST (formerly VT) rail terminus; the landmark Taj Hotel at the Gateway and the luxury Oberoi Trident at Nariman Point; the domestic airport at Santa Cruz; the Cama and GT hospitals near CST; the Metro Adlabs multiplex and Mazgaon Dockyard—killing at least 78 and sending more than 900 to hospital, according to preliminary reports at the time of this edition going to press.
    The attacks have taken a tragic toll on the city's top police brass: High-profile chief of the anti-terrorism squad Hemant Karkare, additional commissioner (ATS) Ashok Kamte and celebrated encounter specialist Vijay were gunned down. Besides, ten constables have been critically wounded. Nine terrorists were caught and two shot dead in the course of the seemingly endless nightmare. A group of women and children were holed up in a ward of Cama Hospital with some terrorists raining fire from the fourth floor of the building, according to government spokesperson Bhushan Gagrani.
    The attacks appeared to be aimed at getting international attention as the terrorists took up to 40 British nationals and other foreigners hostage. The chairman of Hindustan Unilever Harish Manwani and CEO of the company Nitin Paranjpe were among the guests trapped at the Oberoi. All the internal board members of the multinational giant were reported
to be holed up in the Oberoi hotel.
    Some media reports attributed the attack to Lashkar-e-Taiba. A TV channel claimed that it had received an email from an organisation called Deccan Mujahideen
claiming responsibility for the coordinated terror attacks. There were also unconfirmed reports that some of the terrorists came in by sea. A boat laden with explosives was reportedly recovered later at night off the Gateway of India.
    Well after midnight, sources said two of the terrorists were shot and wounded at Girgaum in south Mumbai. The two were driving in a commandeered silver-coloured
Skoda car. Earlier, these men had sprayed bullets from a police Bolero, outside the Metro Adlabs multiplex.
    The attacks occurred at the busiest places in the metropolis.
Besides hotels and hospitals, terrorists struck at Metro Junction, Crawford Market, Wadi Bunder and on the Western Express Highway near the airport. Many of the sites attacked are in close proximity to the police commissioner's office. "This is definitely a terrorist strike. Seven places have been attacked with automatic weapons and grenades. Terrorists are still holed up in three locations—Taj and Oberoi hotels and G T Hospital. Encounters are on at all three places,'' said Maharashtra DGP A N Roy.
Anti-terror chief, encounter cop dead
    
Three senior police officers—ATS Hemant Karkare, encounter specialist Vijay Salaskar and addl commissioner Ashok Kamte—were killed in the terror strike on the city. Ten other police personnel have been injured seriously.

TERROR BY NIGHT
    
Firing around several landmark buildings in Colaba-Nariman Point area, including Taj Gateway hotel and Oberoi Trident hotel
    Top floor of Oberoi was said to be on fire amid reports of blasts in the area; blood-smeared bodies were brought out of Taj lobby
    Firing and blasts also reported from Mazgaon, the Metro Junction, Crawford Market and Colaba
    2 men sprayed bullets outside Metro multiplex. Both later killed
    Firing and bombing apparently began close to Gateway of India just before 10pm. The gunbattle then moved towards CST and raged on for over 45 minutes
    About 20 European Union MPs are believed to be staying at the Taj. Their safety is yet to be ascertained
'Some terrorists may be hiding in CST'
    St George's Hospital and G T Hospital were said to have received 75 bodies and more than 250 injured people, additional municipal commissioner R A Rajeev said. Bombay Hospital got two bodies and 30 injured people were admitted there; Cooper Hospital at Vile Parle got three dismembered bodies.
    Three of the deaths occurred inside the Taj and one G T Hospital attendant died in a shootout inside the hospital. There were reports of people cowering under tables and chairs at both the Taj as well as G T Hospital. Metro Junction resident Manoj Goel said: "My brother, Manish, died in the firing at Colaba's Hamaal Galli.''
    Cops fired back at the men—probably from one of the Lashkar groups, dressed in black and with backpacks and SRPF, Crime Branch, ATS and teams of military commandos were summoned to the spot. Train services at CST were suspended and all roads leading to and from south Mum
bai were blockaded.
    Chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh promised "stringent action'' against the assailants but the mood across Mumbai was not so optimistic.
    There were reports of firing around several landmark buildings in the Colaba-Nariman Point area, including the Taj hotel, Oberoi and other tourist attractions and pubs like Leopold's. The first two floors of the Oberoi were said to be on fire amid reports of blasts in the area and blood-smeared bodies being brought out of the Taj lobby. Terrorists were said to be holed up at the Taj as well as G T Hospital and cops scampered to cordon off these places. A white flag was seen fluttering from an Oberoi Hotel window around 11.20 pm, where a blast was said to have occurred.
    The blast on the Western Express Highway—near Centaur Hotel outside the airport—occurred in a vehicle, deputy commissioner of police Nissar Tamboli said.
    The firing and bombing started close to the Gateway of India. The gunbattle
then moved on towards CST and raged on for over an hour from 10 pm, sending commuters running out of the station.
    The assailants also fired into the crowd at CST and people on the trains and then ran out of the station themselves and into neighbouring buildings, including Cama Hospital, after being challenged by cops.
    SRPF personnel then entered the iconic BMC building, just opposite CST, to take aim at the assailants, BMC commissioner Jairaj Phatak said. "We fear some of the assailants are still inside the station and we want to catch them if they come out,'' a police official said.
    Vikhroli police station senior inspector Habib Ansari was on his way to work from his Colaba home when he saw two armed men, with sophisticated weaponry, trying to run into bylanes near the Gateway of India. "I rushed back to Colaba and all policemen, including GRP and RPF personnel, were called up,'' he added.
    Just before going to press, fresh blasts were reported at the Taj and Oberoi Trident.

Top: A policeman gives water to an injured child in hospital, Above: A vehicle blown up in Vile Parle




FACES OF TERROR: Two of the assailants at CST during the gunbattle


A picture of one of the assailants, taken by our photographer from the window of the TOI office in Mumbai








NIGHT OF TERROR: (Clockwise from top) Bystanders duck for cover as terrorists open fire at Metro junction. A dog squad inspects the Skoda that was used by the terrorists Policemen cordon off the Oberoi


 

I WAS THERE...


Two armed young men calmly walked into CST... opened fire on seeing me click photographs

Mirror photographer Satish Malavade almost got shot at CST



    Iwas on the way to Colaba after being told about firing near Leopold Cafe when I heard gunfire near CST. I got off my bike, parked it and entered the subway that led to the railway station. Passengers were running away from CST via the subway. My attention was drawn to a man sitting on the footpath. A closer inspection revealed he had been hit by a bullet. I again made my way towards CST, this time on road. Policemen had already reached the spot and were asking passengers to evacuate. I was warned about gunfire and told to turn away.
    I sneaked up the stairs to peek inside the station. I saw two men, holding guns, calmly walking towards the platforms for suburban trains from the section where long-distance trains depart. I began shooting pictures even as they walked through the metal detectors to enter the lounge. On seeing me shooting pictures, one of the men opened fire at me and a constable beside me. Thankfully, the bullets did not hit us. Some more cops immediately dragged me away from the spot. From the accounts of passers-by, I gathered that there were at least 6 armed terrorists in and around CST.

    AT CST: I SAW A MAN
    COLLAPSING AT
    THE ENTRANCE
    
As soon as we heard the sound of gunfire outside our VT office, I went down with our photographer Sachin Haralkar to see crowds running towards the CST foot overbridge.The securitymen were pulling down the shutters at the main gate of the Times of India building. I walked past the VT bus stop and was at the entrance to the subway on the Times of India side when across the road, I saw three policemen standing close to the CST entrance and firing.
    Some photographers were trying to take cover behind the subway arches and shoot pictures. Then I saw a man lying on the road... I can't say if he was injured, or just trying to take cover ... I saw him moving...
    People in the crowd said he had been injured in cross-firing and was moved out of the firing line by one of the photographers. Then I heard two more shots and two loud bangs from deep inside CST, which sounded much louder than the firing. To my horror, I saw a man wearing black clothes running out and collapsing at the CST entrance. He was taken away in a police van.
    When an almost empty bus arrived at the bus stop, all the people taking cover in various places jumped out and got into it, and the bus quickly left.
    I tried to look for cover as I saw the same three policemen firing towards the CST entrance. The crowd started running towards the Times building... by the time I entered the building through the small gate in the shutter, the crowd behind me had fallen behind and an armed policeman had taken position near the building.
    — Sumedha Mahorey

    INSIDE CST:
    TWO MEN WERE
    FIRING OUTSIDE
    PLATFORM 1 & 13
    
After hearing that there were blasts outside Olympia Coffee House, Colaba, I went outside to investigate. I dropped by to check at CST station and saw people hiding inside trains. Announcements were being made asking people to remain inside the trains and not to venture out.The entire suburban platforms were empty. At the long-distance platforms, we saw some people lying down on the ground.
There were two men there, carrying rucksacks, who were firing outside platform 1 and 13. They were also throwing hand grenades. On seeing us, they started running after us.We fled and the police also started running in the same direction. We hid near the Cannon pav bhaji stalls across the BMC building and saw a grenade explode outside the BMC building.Two people were firing and we saw them move towards the Cama and Albless Hospital.
A blast has also been reported in a taxi near the Santacruz airport on the Western Express highway at around 10.pm. Two reportedly died on spot. — Abhijeet Sathe

    CST STATION: COP TOOK SHOT FOR ME
    
Igot a call from Taj Mahal Hotel informing me of the firing there.While leaving the Mirror office, on a bike, Satish Malavade and I heard blasts inside CST. We parked our bikes there and on stepping inside saw two men firing. After clicking their pictures, Satish and I tried stepping out of the station. That's when the terrorists followed us. Meanwhile, the cops were busy asking people to leave the station immediately. Had they not done that the toll would have been much more. The terrorists followed us and the cops outside.
    The GRP started taking their positions outside CST and we too took our positions. I found myself standing next to a man in civilian clothes. On being asked he told me he was with the GRP. He asked me to sit down saying, "The terrorists are coming this way. Sit down." The next moment there was a gunshot and he said he had been hit.
    I crawled five meteres towards Flora Fountain and asked the cops to take him to a hospital. Nobody was ready. Eventually two cops and one man in plain clothes came with me and took him away to the hospital. Had the cop not pushed me down, I might have been the one to take that shot.
    — Raju Shinde
LEOPOLD CAFE: 2 MEN WITH AK-47S FIRED INDISCRIMINATELY
    Iwas buying medicines from a chemist shop next to Leopold Cafe, when the firing occured within 20 metres from him.
    "When I heard continuous gun shots, I thought them to be noisy fire crackers. But when I saw two men lying injured and bleeding on the road next to the footpath, I learnt that two men with AK-47 weapons were firing indiscriminately at people outside
the Cafe. A foreigner lady was also injured, other than three others who were taken into shops that had downed shutters immediately. I could hear hand grenades being thrown too. It was unfortunate that the Colaba police was a stone's throw from there and despite it being the most secure area of the city, for almost 15 minutes, there were no cops on the scene."
    — Businessman Ajay Pancholi

This photograph was taken by Satish Malavade immediately after the terrorist (on the right) shot dead a man (left) at CST station


The man in the white shirt is the GRP man who asked Raju Shinde to sit and was then hit by a bullet


There was a blast in a taxi on a service road, off the Western Express Highway near Vile Parle, at 11.30 pm. There were two people in the vehicle at that time and both died



NIGHT OF TERROR -II

Terrorists equipped with AK-47s and hand grenades attacked at least five locations across Mumbai on Wednesday night killing at least 80 people (7 among them policemen) and injuring 250. The terrorists, young men, wearing T-shirts, trousers and helmets, were carrying heavy rucksacks and were firing ramdomly. They also threw hand grenades towards the people. While two of them were killed at Girgaum Chowpatty, nine of them were eventually arrested.

    Around 9.30 pm, the miscreants first attacked the Trident (Oberoi) Hotel at Churchgate and then moved towards Leopold Cafe in Colaba, behind the Taj Hotel. Television grabs showed an attacker climbing up the stairs inside Trident Hotel. The attackers then divided into groups of two and barged into the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) stations, where the commuters were waiting for trains to go back home.
    Although the police resisted the attackers at CST station, the men managed to retaliate with hand grenades. The CST station was immediately evacuated after the firing began at around 10 pm, which went on for about half an hour. More than 10 rounds of firing were heard from inside the CST station. Around 10.50 pm, however, the firing inside CST station resumed. People waiting for long distance trains were lying injured at the platform after being hit by bullets. ATS chief Hemant Karkare received a bullet to his chest. His condition is not known.
    A grenade was thrown at a taxi in Dongri, killing the taxi driver. People in the surrounding area later managed to extricate his body from the wreckage.
    Around 10.40 pm, two of the men were seen exiting the CST station, and moving towards the Cama Hospital. They then threw a grenade on the canopy of subway near the BMC building. Additional Commissioner, East region, Ashok Kamte, and senior inspector Vijay Salaskar (Anti-Extortion Cell) died in the firing outside Cama Hospital. Another additional commissioner Sadanand Date suffered bullet injuries. Although initial reports were scattered, it has been learnt that the injured were rushed to Bombay Hospital, St George Hospital and Cama Hospital. Among the injured is one female foreigner.
    Around 30 people were rushed to Bombay Hospital alone, while 40 were sent to St George Hospital. Some others were also admitted to JJ Hospital and GT Hospital. At the time of going to press, six people succumbed to their injuries.
    Reports also came in about a blast inside a taxi at the Western Express Highway at Vile Parle near Santacruz Airport. The blast was so powerful that the door of the taxi flew off and got lodged on a tree. Cops say it could be that the terrorists were headed to the airport. There were also an incident of firing at Napeansea Road. Meanwhile, two of the attackers entered Cama Hospital at CST and threw grenades in the campus. Two staffers were killed in the attack.
    Dr Saleha, a resident doctor at the neo-natal intensive care unit at Cama Hospital, said, "We were on the second floor when we saw an armed man go up the third floor. There was firing inside our hospital campus, and I later saw two of our ward boys lying in a pool of blood on the ground floor."
    Dr Akash Akinwar, a lecturer from Government Dental College in CST, was having his dinner at Olympia restaurant. "Suddenly, we saw men firing towards the restaurant. We just stooped down to save ourselves,"he said. Meanwhile, at the new Taj Mahal Hotel building, suspected militants opened fire inside the hotel leaving at least two dead and several injured. The watchman at the hotel said he saw a man inside the lobby wearing a red shirt and brandishing an AK-47 shouting that he was a "desh bhakt". He says the man appeared drunk. The dead and injured hotel guests, mostly foreigners, were seen being brought out on luggage trolleys. The injured have been taken to Bombay Hospital. At the time of going to press, a group of policemen had gone inside the Taj and gunshots could be heard. There was also a bag lying at the gate of the hotel and the bomb
squad had been called in to inspect it. Injured guests who were brought out said there were at least five militants inside the hotel who were locked in a gunbattle with the cops. Some of the militants were also seen at the windows of some rooms in the hotel, shouting to the people outside to leave the area.
    Two grenades were also thrown
from the rooms causing deafening blasts outside the hotel. Half an hour later, there were two more blasts at the top floor of the old Taj building and smoke was seen billowing out of the rooms from the top floors. TV channels reported that there were 5 terrorists holed up in room 631. At 1.30 pm there was another blast at the ground floor of the old Taj building.
UNILEVER TOP BRASS
CAUGHT INSIDE TAJ
At least 60 top brass of Uniliver are stuck inside the Taj after getting caught in the terrorist gunfire on Wednesday night. They were in the hotel since 5 pm at a meeting. A Patil, the driver of D Sundaram, one of the executives, said he had called up his boss at around 10.30 pm and was told that all the executives were safe inside the hotel. Sundaram said the executives were being kept on the first floor of the hotel.
    The attackers had also entered a residential building at Colaba.
    Three policemen were also injured at the Vidhan Sabha. A BP petrol pump was also blown up at Colaba at 12.15 pm. At around 12.30 at Metro junction, the terrorists drove by in a police jeep that they had seized and opened fire at the crowd of journalists and cops standing there. One cop was badly injured while a cameraman sustained minor injuries. They then drove towards Marine Drive.
    At the time of going to press, there were reports that two terrorists had been shot dead at Girgaum Chowpatty area. Cops also found a explosives inside a boat at Gateway The army, navy and CRPF having called in to assist the police.

CITY'S SENTINELS WHO FELL

HEMANT KARKARE,
ALWAYS CALM AND COMPOSED
    
Maharashtra Anti Terrorist Squad (ATS) Chief Hemant Karkare was shot dead by the terrorists, while he was heading an operation against the terrorists near the Taj Mahal Hotel in Colaba on Wednesday night. Karkare, who was appointed the ATS chief only on January 22 this year succumbed to injuries after three bullets were fired at his chest by a terrorist. Karkare was leading a team of three police personnel, who were trying to nab the terrorists inside the Taj. Karkare was the brain behind the team presently investigating the Malegaon blasts. His colleagues say he was always calm and composed, and was a brilliant investigator.
    Karkare was Mumbai Police Joint Commissioner (Administration) before he was appointed at the post of state ATS chief. Karkare, who was a 1982 batch Indian Police Service (IPS) officer, was also a Bachelor of Engineering from Vishveshvarayya Regional Engineering in Nagpur.

VIJAY SALASKAR,
VERY DIFFERENT FROM THE REST
    
Vijay Salaskar was said to be the last encounter specialist left in Mumbai police's cap. In the wee hours of Thursday as Salaskar breathed his last and as the news of his demise spread, cops across the city mourned his death. "His encounters were genuine. He was very different from the rest," said a senior cop barely managing to control his tears. Salaskar was part of Mumbai police for 25 years. A 1983 batch officer, he started off as a sub inspector. Hailing from Kolhapur, he always said that he was inspired to join the force since childhood. With around 70 encounters to his credit, he was currently posted as senior inspector of anti extortion cell. Salaskar's career as a cop, like other encounter specialists was shrouded by controversy. Not long ago he was sidelined for unearthing the gutka-underworld nexus. After a recent shoot out in Powai in which he shot dead two gangsters, he was facing a legal suit from the family of the deceased.

People lie dead in the waiting area for long distance trains


A shop-owner at CST was downing his shutters when he was shot in his abdomen. There was no help in sight (r)A policeman shot in his chest falls to the ground


This man, shot inside CST, managed to walk to the subway entrance near Capitol cinema


After shooting passangers in the waiting area for long distance trains, the two terrorists walk to the local platforms


Locals and the plain clothes policemen help to take the victims who were shot to a nearby hospital






NIGHT OF TEROR

SENSATIONAL, EXCLUSIVE PIC OF ONE OF THE TERRORISTS AT CST STATION TAKEN BY OUR PHOTO EDITOR SEBASTIAN D'SOUZA FROM BARELY A FEW FEET AWAY


Some well-armed young men walked into CST on Wednesday night and opened fire at innocents. Similar scenes were witnessed in several parts of the city. Our photographer Satish Malavade almost got shot while clicking one of the terrorists. Read his first-person account on PAGE 4. Among the victims were several policemen, including ATS chief Hemant Karkare and encounter cop Vijay Salaskar. Some cops lost their lives saving civilians.
ATS chief, encounter specialist among at least 80 killed in firing, blasts carried out by 30-odd terrorists on Wednesday night
9:20 PM: Firing outside Trident (Oberoi) Hotel at Nariman Point 9:30 PM: Firing outside Leopold Cafe at Colaba 9:40 PM: Firing at Nariman Pt, behind Taj Hotel 9:45 PM: Firing inside CST station for half an hour 10:30 PM: Firing at BMC HQ (gate no 2) 10: 35 PM: Firing at Azad Maidan police station 10:40 PM: Attackers move towards Cama Hospital and continue firing 10:50 PM: Firing resumes inside CST station 10:50 PM: Firing near Azad Maidan police station 10: 50 PM: Firing at Metro junction 11:00 PM: Blast in taxi at Vile Parle 11PM: Another blast at Dongri 11:10 PM: Firing at Napeansea Road 11:30 PM: Petrol pump near Metro Jn blown up 12:15 AM: Firing resumes at Taj, Trident Hotel 12.30 AM: Terrorists seize police van, open fire randomly at Metro junction, drive to Marine Drive





ATS chief Hemant Karkare


Senior PI Vijay Salaskar




Sunday, November 23, 2008

HIDDEN IN THE HAZE: THE DANGERS WE INHALE

Disease-Causing Particles That Enter The Lungs Are Getting More Minute

Malathy Iyer | TNN

 When the 'Asian Brown Cloud' was first spotted over the Indian Ocean almost a decade ago, an Indo-French team of scientists, including a few from IIT-Bombay, estimated that India was 6 to 7% darker than it was in 1950 due to greenhouse gas emissions released by the mega-haze. This, they postulated, meant more parasites and insects and, hence, more diseases.
    Back in 2002, the experts felt that the emissions from biofuels—such as cars, trucks and buses (plenty of which are operated in Mumbai) and burnt fossil fuels (such as 'chulas' and coal in rural areas)—had contributed to the rise of brown clouds as also the incidence of respiratory ailments.
    Now, Atmospheric Brown Clouds (ABCs) have returned. The new name has been given after India and China protested against the use of Asian in the nomenclature.
    According to a United Nations Environment Programme report released last week, the world is going to be a sicker place because of ABCs. Soot has been found at a monitoring station near Mount Everest, levels of ozone in the respirable zone are higher than before and heart diseases could rise, the UN team has said.
    Mumbai's doctors are alarmed, but not entirely surprised. When the first-ever study on environmental pollution and its effects on health was done by a team from
KEM Hospital, Parel, over a decade ago, the worrisome factor was PM 10. In other words, Particulate Matter (PM) measuring 10 microns was identified as a cause of respiratory illness—chest congestion, bronchitis, allergies and so on—in the city.
    "Now, we are staring at PM 1, which is Particulate Matter that is just a micron thick,'' said Dr Pramod Niphadkar, leading allergy specialist in the city. Mumbai's research scientists have recently found out about ultra-fine-PM and even nano-PM, which is even smaller than 1 micron.
    The smaller the Particulate Matter, the easier it is for it to slip into the lung, bypassing the body's filtering mechanism—the muco-ciliary escalator—which is meant to trap foreign bodies. "We now know that Suspended Particulate Matter causes long-term and irreversible damage to the lungs,'' said a civic hospital doctor.
    With the latest ABC possibly containing diesel Par
ticulate Matter, Mumbaikars can expect worse. "Increased pollution levels could mean more cases of respiratory ailments, allergies, asthma and even heart attacks,'' said Niphadkar.
    Particulate Matter can 'burden' white blood corpuscles, affecting a person's general health. This can lead to clotting in blood vessels connected to the heart and brain, triggering heart attacks, said doctors. "So, what is regularly passed off as a stress-induced heart attack could just be related to pollution,'' said a doctor.
    For smokers, ABCs could spell worse news. "Smokers have damaged lungs because of their 'personal' pollution, but increased pollution could make them more vulnerable to lung cancer,'' said Niphadkar.
    In Mumbai, where diesel is the favoured fuel, PM comprising diesel globules along with allergens makes vulnerable patients 10 times more susceptible to allergy attacks.

    THE ABCs OF ATMOSPHERIC BROWN CLOUDS
    
Mumbai is one of the megacities identified as an
    ABC hotspot
    ABCs form due to burning coal, other fossil fuels
    and biomass
COOLING | Globally, ABCs may be countering or 'masking' the warming impacts of climate change by between 20% and 80%, because particles such as sulphates and some organics reflect sunlight back into space and cool the earth's surface. Other particles, like black carbon in soot, absorb sunlight before it reaches the ground. So 'hot spot' cities become darker or dimmer
WARMING | In some cases and regions, ABCs can aggravate the impact of greenhouse-gas-induced climate change because carbon and soot absorb sunlight and heat the air
EFFECTS | Risks to health and food production, dimming light, weakening monsoon, rise in heavy rain days
DANGER | If ABCs were eliminated overnight, it could trigger a rapid global temperature rise of as much as to 2o Celsius. Thus, there should be a simultaneous cut in greenhouse gases

UN Warning: The Health Risks
ABCs contain a variety of toxic aerosols, carcinogens and particles, including particulate matter of less than 2.5 microns in width (PM 2.5). These have been linked to a variety of ailments, from respiratory diseases to cardio-vascular problems
OUTDOOR EXPOSURE | If there are increases of 20 microgramme/cubic metre in PM 2.5, it could lead to about 3.4 lakh more deaths per year in China and India
Economic losses due to outdoor exposure to ABCrelated PM 2.5 has been crudely estimated at 2.2% the GDP in India and 3.6% the GDP in China
INDOOR EXPOSURE | IThe World Health Organisation estimates that more than 7.8 lakh deaths in the two countries can be linked to solid fuel use at home
Source | UNEP Atmospheric Brown Cloud Report
Atmospheric Brown Clouds Can...
Trigger respiratory ailments such as bronchitis
Scar the lungs forever
Worsen attacks among patients with asthma & allergies
Lead to clots in blood vessels, causing heart attacks
Increase the probability of lung cancer among smokers


‘CNG, LPG-run vehicles pose health hazard’

Mumbai: Vehicles run by compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquid petroleum gas (LPG) in the metropolis are emitting particulates smaller than 2.5 micron in diameter which pose a health hazard, a BMC report has said. However, due to the use of cleaner fuels like unleaded petrol and low sulphur diesel, levels of so2 and lead have come down in Mumbai, the report added.
    The environment status report has been prepared by the BMC's air quality monitoring and research laboratory. The smaller particulates, considered a serious health hazard, are generated in large quantities by vehicles which run on gaseous fuels like LPG and CNG, the report said.

    "The particulates smaller than 2.5 microns are easy to breathe in and dangerous substances can enter the body. If they are left unregulated, they will be major health hazards. This could also lead to lung cancer.'' AGENCIES

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

God's Pharmacy

A friend sent this to me. It's been said that God first separated the salt water from the fresh, made dry land, planted a garden, made animals and fish... all before making a human. He made and provided what we'd need before we were born. These are best & more powerful when eaten raw. We're such slow learners...

God left us a great clue as to what foods help what part of our body!
God's Pharmacy! Amazing!
A sliced Carrot looks like the human eye. The pupil, iris and radiating lines look just like the human eye... and YES, science now shows carrots greatly enhance blood flow to and function of the eyes.
A Tomato has four chambers and is red. The heart has four chambers and is red. All of the research shows tomatoes are loaded with lycopine and are indeed pure heart and blood food.
Grapeshang in a cluster that has the shape of the heart. Each grape looks like a blood cell and all of the research today shows grapes are also profound heart and blood vitalizing food.
A Walnut looks like a little brain, a left and right hemisphere, upper cerebrums and lower cerebellums. Even the wrinkles or folds on the nut are just like the neo-cortex. We now know walnuts help develop more than three (3) dozen neuron-transmitters for brain function.
Kidney Beansactually heal and help maintain kidney function and yes, they look exactly like the human kidneys.
Celery, Bok Choy, Rhubarband many more look just like bones. These foods specifically target bone strength. Bones are 23% sodium and these foods are 23% sodium. If you don't have enough sodium in your diet, the body pulls it from the bones, thus making them weak. These foods replenish the skeletal needs of the body.
Avocadoes, Eggplant and Pearstarget the health and function of the womb and cervix of the female - they look just like these organs. Today's research shows that when a woman eats one avocado a week, it balances hormones, sheds unwanted birth weight, and prevents cervical cancers. And how profound is this? It takes exactly nine (9) months to grow an avocado from blossom to ripened fruit. There are over 14,000 photolytic chemical constituents of nutrition in each one of these foods (modern science has only studied and named about 141 of them).
Figsare full of seeds and hang in twos when they grow. Figs increase the mobility of male sperm and increase the numbers of Sperm as well to overcome male sterility.
Sweet Potatoeslook like the pancreas and actual ly balance the glycemic index of diabetics.
Olivesassist the health and function of the ovaries
Oranges, Grapefruits, and other Citrus fruits look just l ike the mammary glands of the female and actually assist the health of the breasts and the movement of lymph in and out of the breasts.
Onionslook like the body's cells. Today's research shows onions help clear waste materials from all of the body cells. They even produce tears which wash the epithelial layers of the eyes. A working companion, Garlic, also helps eliminate waste materials and dangerous free radicals from the body.



SUBJECT: Psalm 46:19
'Be Still and Know that I AM GOD'


Angels have walked beside me All my life--and they still do.

*********************

This is to all of you who
Mean something to me,
I pray for your happiness.
The Candle Of Love, Hope & Friendship


This candle was lit on the

15th of September, 1998.

May God richly bless you as you keep this candle burning.


 


 

FREEDOM ISN'T FREE...SOMEONE HAD TO PAY FOR IT
If you can read this...thank a teacher.
The Lord will never give you more than you can handle!!

 

In Times of Difficulty never say  Oh God i have a big problem, instead say Hey Problem i have a big GOD.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

‘Reply All’ can be a weapon of mass destruction

Technology is quick, cheap and easy—it can also be deadly

Kavita Kukday-Deb

It took just one silly email to break my marriage of four years,'' laments Raj Mathur. "How I wish I could turn time back.''  Turning time back is as impossible as turning back technology. Ask Mathur about that one errant FWD email that was the beginning of the end. It started as a simple email to all his friends where he quoted an excerpt from the latest book of his favourite author. As it happened, his friend list included his ex-girlfriend who immediately replied with a sonnet. Back gushed Mathur, "Oh I remember this one. It used to be our sonnet! To tell you the truth even after four years of marriage I still can't feel the same connection with my wife that we had ...will I ever get over you?''
    Later, when it hit home that he had hit the Reply All button, and sent the email to his wife too, he knew he was on the road to Splitsville.
    A broken marriage might be an extreme case, but tales of emails and instant messages going to the wrong person and causing trouble are only too common. In fact, there's even a term for it, the "Oh no second'', which are the words one utters in anguish after hitting the Send key. Shweta Rao, a Delhi resident, tells a story of a friend's husband who sent an email to a group of 20-odd friends with an attachment that said 'Our baby's first snap'. Apparently, however, he had forwarded a picture of the birthing process instead. Realising his folly, he immediately shot off another email saying please don't open the earlier picture. Needless to say the next email arrived a second too late. Oh no!
    Angad Mehra, a marketing manager in Mumbai still cringes at his most embarrassing email-moment. "My wife's name is Sumit, and unfortunately my VP is also called Sumit. After a couple of 'Hey honeybee! What's cooking? How about a candle
light at the beach tonight?' the VP called me into his cabin. Thank God for his sense of humour!''
    Mehra's case was mild compared to Rima Madan, a finance executive with a garment company. After a long email fight with a client, she decided to escalate the matter to her boss. She simply forwarded the entire email thread with an additional, "This fellow is getting on my nerves. You please
deal with this pain!!'' Instead of sending it to the boss, she sent it back to the client. He was the company's biggest customer and Madan is currently unemployed. Enough said.
    Instant messages or IMs are next in the line of weapons of mass destruction. Pradeep Iyer, an advertising consultant based in Bangalore talks about his mortifying IM experience. "Amongst our group of friends
it's common to call each other names, so one day when I saw my school buddy online, I sent an IM that read, 'How goes jackass'? He signed off without answering. An hour later he called to tell me that his laptop was projecting a product presentation to a client on a huge screen when my IM popped open. I was mortified.''
    Earlier, IMs used to be lesser evils since they seemed to disappear into
thin air once you had sent them. However, thanks to chat clients like Gmail that save every single chat, these can be dangerous now. Especially if your parents get to your emails. Tasneem Kazi, a commerce student, made that mistake. Once she quickly needed some details from her email so she asked her mom to log on. Along with the mail, her mom went through her chat discussion with a girlfriend where they were planning a wine party. This of course led to her being grounded for a month. Far worse, the broken trust hasn't been rebuilt.
    Technology can be cheap, quick and easy but it can leave a trail of deadly destruction if it goes astray.
Don't hit Reply All
    
Reply All and Auto fill aren't your friends. Unfortunately the Reply and Reply All buttons are next to each other. Check, and check again, to make sure a response intended for one person isn't going to the group. Even if your email client offers it, refuse Auto fill's help as much as you can.
    Write an email or a chat conversation as though you were writing on a postcard that anyone can read. Save the personal and saucy gossip for a phone call or face-to-face meet.
    Pause before you hit the Send button. There are times you send an email on impulse and the minute you hit Send, you regret it. Don't dash off an email in anger, because in the end, it's written communication in cold, hard print that can be held against you. If you find restraint difficult, you might want to try Google Mail goggles, a new under-development tool that stops you from sending emails you might regret later.


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