TV Interview

9:45. Yesterday.

Long back from school, having learnt of the terrorist acts that were tearing Mumbai apart, I sat in sullen silence watching the news with my father.
School had been a languid affair that day, with an air despondency and glumness hanging in the classrooms.

A harried image of Barkha Dutt (the news reporter) appeared on the screen. By what she told the viewers, she had been out in front of the Taj Mahal Palace hotel the entire day. Presently, she was with the husband of a woman who was trapped inside the hotel, a man named Shantanu Saikia. The husband needed some news of his wife and the reporter required a heart breaking story. A win-win situation(?) even in these hard times. The ensuing dialogue went like this-

BD: And now I have with me a relative of someone who has been inside that hotel since yesterday night. Shantanu your wife Sabina is trapped inside, isn't she?

SS: Yes Barkha, she had gone for a wedding function, and then the terrorists..came.

BD: So Shantanu, tell me how have you been dealing with this situation, how did you get to know about it?

SS: I got to know about it when I was just coming back from work and as soon as I realised my wife was inside the Taj, I rushed here as fast as I could.

BD: Did you get a chance to speak to her after the incident took place?

SS: The last time I talked to her was at 9pm last night. Then she kept messaging me from under her bed, and the last message I got from her was at 2am early this morning. (probably early this morning felt a little more reassuring to himself than late last night, I thought)

BD: Oh.(she immediately looked downcast) Is your family here with you right now?

SS: No, it's just me. My children are at home. Me and Sabina have two very small children, my son who's 11 years old and my 14 year old daughter. Sabina used to dote on them very much...

BD: Please don't say used will all be okay. (she was almost pleading)

SS: I hope, I hope, I will never lose hope. The last message I got from her was that the terrorists were in her bathroom.

BD: Oh dear.

SS: Yes. (He adjusted his glasses) And..And now today there has been a large explosion in that area. (his voice trailed off)

BD: It will all be alright, Shantanu.

SS: No, I won't lose hope. I can't.

That left me stunned. Sabina's husband was a strong man. And now his family had been (supposedly) shattered.

I sat up at night, unable to help, unable to sleep.
I wish I had cried. Maybe then this would've been out of my mind.


Espèra said...

It's crazy isn't it?

And WTF do people mean by "wake-up calls"? What has the country done since the Delhi bombings?
Freaking wake-up calls man.
More like a buzzer mode for the country that is refusing to wake up.

Asneel said...

mature post. living in mumbai, i can't help but feel so vulnerable to terrorist attacks. mumbikars may be fighters but that was one mighty blow.

Quicksilver said...


Yes exactly, I hate when the people in the government say stuff like that call but go onto treat it like a commonplace incident, probably hoping it won't happen again, atleast for as long as their govt's in power.


Youlive in Mumbai since when? Good lord are you and your folks alright?
Mumbaikars are fighters, of course, and as Prahlad Kakkar said, they're survivors as well.


Espèra said...

Did I write buzzer?
I meant "snooze".


Yeah, well, it eventually just comes down to party politics. But don't you think that a party that is successful in battling this kind of a problem will definitely win the next elections?
Logic, man.
(Not for you, I mean the above line for the politicians who are just sitting back. And yawning.)

Anirudh Garg said...


i hope she is fine now....i seriously do....

Abhinav V said...

Sabina Sehgal Saikia was my mom's colleague's sister... I'm sorry to tell you she died a very gruesome death in her 6th floor suite at the Taj, when the terrorists barged into her room and found her hiding under the bed... Her suite was also one of the worst affected by the fire...

She has a 14 year old daughter and a 11 year old son... All we can do now is to pray for them...

The whole city of Mumbai was held ransom by the cowardly terrorists for more than 60 long hours... and I completely agreed with Shobhaa De when she said that the word 'resilience' has completely lost its meaning for Mumbaikars... How much more do we have to put up with all this??

Anirudh Garg said...

god bless her soul....

Quicksilver said...

Venky -

Do you mind if I call you Venky? feels weird addressing someone with you own name otherwise. Thanks a ton for visiting.

Yes, it is sad. first time i heard about all this, i felt strangely empty inside and my skin prickled.
Let's just hope something like this never happens again.

Anirudh -

I saw the final procession on tv...made me even more depressed

Anirudh Garg said...


Asneel said...

Everone's alright,,becky's cousin was hit on her thigh at leopold.

she'll never be coming to india again. beck may go as well.

Anuj said...

Oh come on does it really matter? I mean, look at yourself, you're just another person in an internet meme, which admittedly is for a good cause. Those images made me sick too, but the thing is that playing blame games isn't going to solve anything, neither is a 'stronger' security force, more border patrols, improvement of intelligence agencies or anything else like that.

You can never ever be 100% secure add this to the fact that the empirical probability of you being in a terror attack is so insignificant that its practically 0. I don't understand why can't people accept this fact, its almost like fear is contagious. The media revels in it, and so do we; we end up projecting our own fears and insecurity about the system we live in on to this situation.

Just take a look around, people are crying over the system because it has done ill to them not due to these blasts, or anything like that. I think that people need to grow up and accept a few things and then look for a solution, and the solution isn't as easy as any one of them thinks it is. I doubt it if anyone of those protesters has fully grasped the consequences of the events which have been swung into motion, I certainly don't.

Rosh said...

hi. well i guess thats how all of us feel..i mean, the mumbai blasts left all of us whole family was glued to the tv 24X7... (my grandpa lives in mumbai..thank god he's okay)