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Taj Mahal hotel from inside after the terror attack
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What remains of the iconic Taj Hotel

November 29, 2008

The Taj Mahal hotel, known for its super luxurious interiors with vaulted alabaster ceilings, beautiful archways and the dramatic cantilever stairways, now stands completely shattered by blood-stained floors, soot-marred ceilings, burnt windows and of course the stench of bodies strewn across it.

What greets you as go you near the lobby are broken glass panes, gun-toting commandos looking at you menacingly for closing in rather than the regular smiling bell boys who were quick to welcome you with a greeting.

"The interior is completely destroyed. It smells awful as bodies have been lying there since the day everything began. The terrorists had shot at many of the lights, making many parts of the hotel difficult to move in after evening," said an NSG commando, who had taken part in the operation to flush out terrorists responsible for the bloodiest siege situation in the country.

The ballroom, which hosted innumerable number of wedding receptions, books' release, product launches and parties, stands burnt completely with bullet marks, which are still visible and water flooding the floors, as pointed out by Mumbai Fire Brigade personnel.

Text: PTI | Photograph: Julian Herbert/Getty Images

Also read: Aah Taj!

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