Skip To Content

    Twelve Years Later, People Share Their Memories Of The Horrific 26/11 Attacks That Shook Mumbai

    Reliving one of the darkest days in India's history. Warning: This post contains disturbing images and instances.

    On the 26th of November, 2008, the city of Mumbai was shaken by a series of co-ordinated attacks carried out by ten terrorists of the Lashkar-e-Taiba. Having occurred over a period of four days, these attacks are perhaps the worst that India has ever witnessed. As many as 174 lives were lost and the memories of this dreadful day continue to haunt Mumbaikars.

    Arko Datta / Reuters

    In these Reddit threads, people shared their memories of this horrifying day. Trigger Warning.

    "I remember this day. My dad had gone to Mumbai for a medical conference — he is okay and the hotel he was staying in wasn't hit. I was six and I still remember my mother crying while watching the news until she called my dad and heard that he was okay. Still sends chills down my spine." — u/Moderated_Soul

    Ritam Banerjee / Getty Images

    "I was there and it was terrifying. I haven’t been back since. I had been working in Hyderabad and was visiting Mumbai. I was so excited to stay at the Taj. I've have had PTSD since then. Bad days." — u/HiTechCity

    Stringer India / Reuters

    "Those were some dark days. I remember I was in the 8th standard and used to sit glued to the television for the latest updates on the rescue operations, after coming home from school. I had spent a part of my early childhood in Mumbai and my parents had stayed there even longer, so the news of the attacks and everything that followed was really painful for us. I can't even begin to imagine how harrowing it must have been for the people who were there." — u/Villeneuve_

    Stringer India / Reuters

    "My father worked near CST and was scheduled to take the train out from CST around 10 pm. My grandmother was watching the news and suddenly saw reports of gunfire inside the station. We tried to get in touch with dad and couldn't because the networks were jammed. My mom and grandma started bawling, fearing the worst. Relatives kept calling to check if my dad was okay. Every call triggered a fresh wave of tears. They decided to go to the nearby temple and pray, and didn't come back for an hour until my dad called back around 11:30 pm." — u/I_am_oneiros

    Uriel Sinai / Getty Images

    "A close friend who is a flight attendant was in the Oberoi at that time. His tales still send a chill down my spine — The air conditioning was shut off and he had placed wet towels below the door openings so as to not let the smoke come inside. With every grenade and rifle that was shot, he thought he was next. He tried breaking the window from the inside with a chair, but could not. After more than 24 gruelling hours, he heard a knock on his door and it was one of our commandos. He was finally rescued." — u/masteryoda

    Uriel Sinai / Getty Images

    "I was with my then-girlfriend and we were shopping in Colaba Causeway that evening, 200 meters away from Cafe Leopold. We always used to go to CST for shopping, spend some time at Marine Drive or Gateway of India, have dinner, go for a late-night walk, and catch the last train back. That day, her mom had an accident and we had to rush. She unknowingly saved us." — u/sardikhasi

    Ritam Banerjee / Getty Images

    "I had a college senior who was sitting in Leopold Cafe with his friends. He was supposed to get married to his girlfriend of seven years in December. His friends survived but unfortunately, he didn't. I don't know if time can ever heal such wounds." — u/CommonMBAMan

    Uriel Sinai / Getty Images

    "My uncle died in the Taj Hotel so we had to go to Mumbai to identify his body. That tense situation in Dadar Station still haunts me." — u/yasiryobel

    Uriel Sinai / Getty Images

    "I was at Churchgate with a group of friends when the blasts at Opera House happened. We got into the train to go home and the news of the blast spread. Telephone networks were jammed and our parents were getting frantic." — u/greengruzzle

    Stringer India / Reuters

    "I lived in the next building over from the Taj so those three days and nights are etched in my mind. We first heard what sounded like firecrackers being burst in the street. There was a cricket match going on so we were all focused on that. We then saw loads of people running in the street, which made us realise that something was not right. As we peered out of our balcony, we saw two of the terrorists — guns drawn, shooting into the crowd, and making their way to the side-entrance of the Taj. Back then, you could straight up enter with no security — it was just an open door." — u/onemoreaccount

    #MumbaiTerrorAttack Heroes are immortal. They keep inspiring generations.

    "The most vivid memory of that first night was when the suite in the corner of the Taj caught on fire. We were on our terrace, looking right at it — a distance of less than 50 feet between us. The screams of the people being burnt alive still haunts me. We later learned that it was the hotel's general manager's family that was in that room, and it was probably the screams of their kids that we were hearing. Fuck, that was awful.

    I could barely get sleep during those three days. Ever so often, we'd hear a loud bang. Every time we'd think that the terrorists had blown themselves up because the sound was so loud and shook the entire building. In fact, they were just grenades being tossed. Grenades sound a LOT louder than they do in the movies." - u/onemoreaccount

    "I was working in Andheri West at the time and they asked us to go home immediately. I stayed close by so it wasn't much of a hassle but the people who lived in South Bombay decided to stay over at their friends' or relatives' place for the night. We got a day off the next day and I had to call everyone I knew in South Bombay to find out if they were okay." — u/fat_saint

    Indranil Mukherjee / Getty Images

    Moshe Holtzberg, the son of US Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg, who was killed with his wife in the November 26, 2008 terror attack in Mumbai, looks on during a memorial for the victims of the attack at Nariman (Chabad) House in Mumbai.

    "One of my teachers in the 11th standard told me that one of his friends was made to stand in a firing squad and the terrorists shot at them. Luckily for his friend, the dead bodies fell on him so he did not get shot but he had to pretend to be dead. Horrifying." — u/BIG_DICK_MYSTIQUE

    Hindustan Times / Getty Images

    "I was on my way from Delhi to Mumbai Central and reached at around 9 or 10 am on the 27th. There was an eerie silence in the station and in the local stations that came in between, not a single fucking soul could be seen on the platforms. Taxi wallahs were ready to ferry us to Navi Mumbai for ₹200 that day. Everyone there was desperate to gtfo." — u/indi_n0rd

    Rupak De Chowdhuri / Reuters

    Note: Responses have been edited for length and clarity.

    BuzzFeed Daily

    Keep up with the latest daily buzz with the BuzzFeed Daily newsletter!

    Newsletter signup form