Bombay blasts

I was on my short commute today when I got a text message from my father in India. It said, ” … All ok in Mumbai. You may not be able to contact them as lines jammed …”. He was referring to my sister and her family. I didn’t know what to make of this. I thought that perhaps the Sunday incident had flared up. I hadn’t read the news this morning, so I called him and he told me about the bomb blasts. Seven bombs went off on board various trains of the western lines within one hour (Mapped locations). For more info and details from the blogosphere, see Ultrabrown, Vantage Point, Sepia Mutiny, MumbaiHelp, and Metroblogging Mumbai. Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time this beloved city has been a target.

Just the other day, in conversation with friends, I was reminiscing my experiences with riding the trains in Bombay. I grew up there through most of the nineties, mid-teens to early twenties. Rush hour travel is the kind of thing you’d remember fondly only if you were nostalgic. The train cars are sometimes packed so tight, one could travel upright without either foot on the floor. 4.5 million people commute on the trains everyday. With that in mind, the horror of these events is inescapable. Emotions will run high, we’ll all mourn, but the people of Mumbai will not be terrorized.

In 1993, in the days after the thirteen serial bomb blasts in two hours, there were billboards proclaiming that the city got back on it’s feet within 24 hours. In memory of those who died, I hope that spirit prevails, that the aftermath is peaceful, and that the perpetrators are brought to justice.

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3 thoughts on “Bombay blasts

  1. Unfortunately, the railway/subway system is always going to be a prime target for terrorits. With that many people commuting everyday there is no way that you can effectively screen that many passengers. NYC has 3 million passengers per day and the best NYPD can do is random bag checks. Really the only thing we can do is to be vigilant and aware of our surroundings and be ready to report anything that looks suspicious.

  2. How terrible. Why do people have to be so mean??

    Bridges leading out of Lebanon were being bombed to keep Hezbollah in the country, also in recent news.

  3. @karmagroovy: That’s true. Actually, train stations in India have had announcements about suspicious packages as standard fare for decades now. I’ve read other discussions and it seems that a social solution is the best way to tackle this. Technology can augment the effort, but in the end it is up to people. Complete reliance on technology will probably fail.

    @Jennifer: Yea, it’s terrible. The situation in that area remains quite bad. Let’s see how it goes.

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