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'We know we are brave'

December 9, 2008
They sprayed water on the windshield, started the wipers and put on the headlights on high beam. Two of our inspectors, Bhaskar Kadam and Hemant Bhoundhankar, fired at the driver and killed him," says Senior Inspector Mahale.

"On the other side, the other terrorist lay down on the road as if in surrender. Omble, who was closest to him, tried to disarm him, by grabbing his gun. But the man fired. Omble did not let go. He was killed, but he saved his colleagues."

"As the terrorist tried to shake off Omble, the rest of the policemen leapt on him. One grabbed his gun while another took out his revolver. The rest hit him with lathi (batons) till he fainted."

"We took the terrorists to the Nair Hospital and our men to the Harkissandas Hospital. Another colleague, Sanjay Govilkar, also had a bullet injury. Omble died in hospital, but Sanjay survived."

"We filed the FIR (First Information Report) and conducted the primary investigation before the Crime Branch took over."

Mahale has been a policeman for 30 years. He has seen the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts, riots, blasts in taxis, blasts on trains, and now these attacks. "It has made every Mumbai cop proud. We know we are brave. We know what we are capable of, when the occasion demands."

He presides over 160 policemen and officers, most wielding lathis.

Image: Senior Inspector Nagappa R Mahale

Also read: Salute the brave constables of D B Marg police station
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