How a live blogger captured the attack on Osama

Last Updated: Tuesday, May 3, 2011 - 01:02

New Delhi: Little knowing that he was
following a historic moment, an I-T expert in Abbottabad in
Pakistan tweeted details of the covert US operation, which
killed al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden, some eight hours before
the formal announcement of his death.

Sohaib Akhtar tweeted the first tweet of the day at one
in the morning (Pakistan time) saying "Helicopters hovering
above Abbottabad at 1 AM (is a rare event)."

Akhtar, whose profile on the micro blogging site
describes him as "an IT consultant taking a break from the
rat-race by hiding in the mountains with his laptops" did not
realise that he was not the only one "hiding" in those hills,
and within the vicinity was world`s most wanted terrorist
Osama Bin Laden, who was living in a mansion close by.

Within minutes, Akhtar who was apparently angry over
power cuts and sound of chopper in his area tweeted, "Go away
Helicopter - before I take out my giant swatter."
"A huge window shaking bang here in Abbottabad Cantt. I
hope its not the start of something nasty," feared Akhtar
after hearing a huge explosion in the vicinity.

The reactions to his tweets show that locales were
worried about some untoward developments which may be
unfolding without realising that events of the night will
bring quite township of Abbottabad on front-page headlines of
newspapers across the globe.

One Hania Ahmed also tweeted about a big-blast in
Abbottabad and expressed apprehensions if everything was fine
in the city.

An hour later, about 2 AM Pakistan time, Akhtar posted
that a "helicopter/UFO" was shot down over Bilal Town area.
He clarified to one his followers on twitter that it was
not a fault which brought down the helicopter and posted
"people are saying it was not a technical fault and it was
shot down. I heard it circle 3-4 times above, sounded

While President Barrack Obama`s was announcing the death
of mastermind of 9/11 terror attacks on World Trade Centre in
a special operation, Akhtar said that some families have been
killed during the helicopter "accident".

His posts on the twitter describe that the area was
cordoned off by Army and there were several traffic jams
resulting from travel restrictions and cordoning of area by
the Armed forces.

After the announcement, Akhtar could not hide his
amusement saying "Uh oh, now I`m the guy who liveblogged the
Osama raid without knowing it."


First Published: Tuesday, May 3, 2011 - 01:02

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