"Mumbai 26/11 to 28/11/2008 (Comments as on 30/11)"
and block the way with his motor bike. The terrorists while trying to bypass the 2-wheeler hit the road divider and came to a stop. By then the policemen at the barricade rushed up, killed one terrorist, while ASI Omble grappled with the other Terrorist who had been injured earlier at CAMA Hospital. This brave policeman was fatally shot but his action allowed the other policemen to capture this 2nd terrorist ( Ajmal Kasab ) alive. A purely inadvertent happening, possible only due to the brave act of ASI Omble, that has been the most important and vital part of all the subsequent investigation and which helped determine the involvement of Pakistan in the attack.
The alertness, the quick response, the courage and determination of all those involved in driving these two terrorists into a situation where one terrorist could be captured was exemplary and needs to be duly recognized, especially the Officer at CAMA Hospital and of course the ASI, Tukaram Omble.
By then all the other 8 terrorists were within the two Hotel complexes, the Taj and the Oberoi, and in the Nariman/Chabad House. All of which were duly surrounded by the Police. BUT-
- Did they, perhaps with the help of the BMC (Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation), put up proper barricades at a reasonable distance (say 50 to 100 mtrs where possible) as they always do for political rallies etc?-NO
- Did they properly regulate the entry & exit and allow for proper movement of the Fire Department, BMC and Security Forces vehicles?- NO, not really
- Were there any people or procedures in place to identify, record and interrogate the people who come out of the buildings and guide them to safety. Infact many were confused and went back in to their subsequent death.
- Was there any senior and proper person at or near the site to coordinate action, reassure the people and, at regular intervals, to address the Media? - NO.
- Ofcourse some level of individual Departmental level coordination from their respective Head Quarters was evident but it was obviously not adequate.
- The BMC claimed to be waiting to be called upon.
- The Fire Services were also waiting to be asked what else they could do.
- Staff at some of the major Hospitals in the area, were also waiting to be called upon.
- The Media too was trying to find someone who could give even partial answers and explanations for what they were witnessing.
- Someone at the initial stages itself reacted correctly and called up the MARINE COMMANDOS (MARCOS). But someone else higher up, obviously interfered and when the MACROS arrived at the site, almost within an hour or so of the hotels and Chabad house being occupied, there was no appropriate Authority to sign their order to move in and fire as necessary to clear the buildings of the hostiles, - a well established legal requirement laid down by the Government, without which the Military is not authorized to proceed.
In short- overall Command, Control, Coordination and Leadership