26/11 attacks: Two yrs on, rail announcer Zende has moved on

Central railway announcer Vishnu Zende, whose presence of mind saved several lives during the Mumbai terror attacks at CST, has the memories of the horrid day still etched in his mind but the incident, no longer haunts him.

Updated: Nov 24, 2010, 19:59 PM IST

Mumbai: Central railway announcer Vishnu
Zende, whose presence of mind saved several lives during the
Mumbai terror attacks at CST, has the memories of the horrid
day still etched in his mind but the incident, no longer haunts him.
"It’s been two years since the terrorists stormed the
railway station and indiscriminately opened fire but I still
remember the tragedy minute by minute. Its one such ill-fated
incident that I cannot forget in my life..But its memories do
not haunt me anymore," Zende told agency.

On the second anniversary of the terror attacks this
year, it will just be another day for Zende, who has been
working with the railways since 19 years. "It will be life as
usual," the 37-year-old announcer said.

Risking his life, Zende saved hundreds of commuters by
continuously alerting them to leave the railway station when
two terrorists--Abu Ismail and Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab--
started firing indiscriminately.
He also intimated the Railway Protection Force (RPF) and
the Government Railway Police (GRP) to initiate action against
them.

Within minutes, commuters started moving out and the
terrorists headed towards the control room from where Zende
was making announcements and opened fire on him but he escaped
unhurt.

He said his life has personally not changed much though
"those who became victims of terror come up to my cabin and
thank me. They say that they have learnt how to handle
difficult situations from me."

Zende was one among those invited by the US Consulate to
attend the function at the Taj Hotel recently where President
Barack Obama paid homage to 26/11 victims.

PTI