Mumbai: The jeep in which six policemen, including the then ATS chief Hemant Karkare were killed during the 26/11 terror attack, is yet to get a face-lift and has been gathering dust at Motor Transport (MT) wing`s garage here.
The bullet-ridden Qualis jeep (MHO1-BA-569) has been moved to the MT Department in June after obtaining permission from the special court, which had heard the 26/11 case.
The broken glass and bullet marks on the windshield and the body are still visible on the jeep.
The vehicle with punctured tyres was parked outside Crime Branch office till June inside the Police Headquarters at Crawford market before it was moved for repairs to the MT
Assistant Police Commissioner (MT division) Prakash Achrekar told a news agency, "we have recently obtained necessary orders and the repair work of the vehicle will be started soon. It would be taken up on a priority basis."
However, sources in the Department said the MT garage is busy repairing other police vehicles which need urgent attention. Rs two lakh budget for the repairs of the ill-fated
jeep has been sanctioned, they said.
"There is a shortage of labour. Our hands are full as of now. During the rainy season, there were a number of vehicles waiting for some or other repairs. Hence, the Qualis jeep has not been touched yet," sources added.
The MT has planned to put new seat covers, windshields, a GPS system with a wireless set, new tyres and a fresh coat of paint before it is inducted into the force.
On November 26, 2008, Karkare, Additional Police Commissioner Ashok Kamte and Inspector Vijay Salaskar rushed to Cama Hospital in this Qualis jeep when they learnt that the convicted Pakistani terrorist Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab and his associate Abu Ismail opened firing there.
After killing the six policemen including Karkare, Kamte and Salaskar in the firing, the two terrorists drove the Qualis towards the Metro Cinema square. They then
indiscriminately fired at the crowd at the Metro Junction while moving in the vehicle.
The jeep started wobbling near Mittal Tower in South Mumbai as it got punctured and therefore they hijacked a Skoda car no. MH-02-JP-1276 which was coming from the opposite direction.