New York/London: The Indian community abroad today reacted with “shock” and “disbelief” to the audacious terror strike in Mumbai, voicing concern that it will hit the country economically and demanding strong measures by the government to combat terrorism.
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Indian diaspora members were glued to their TV sets as the terrible events unfolded overnight. Many of them, with relatives and friends in Mumbai, were making frantic calls and checking on the internet for latest information.
As a large number of foreigners and overseas Indians remained stuck in Mumbai, with many believed trapped inside the luxury hotels that were taken over by terrorists, the External Affairs Ministry opened a control room in New Delhi to answer queries from abroad.
The Indian High Commission in London opened a 24-hour helpline while the Indian consulate in Dubai set up a hotline to assist relatives and friends of those in Mumbai.
Strongly condemning the “heartless acts” of terrorism, the US-based Indian National Overseas Congress (INOC) called on the government to deal firmly with terrorists, their sponsors and financiers.
Expressing “shock” over the attacks, Chairman of American Indians for Democracy, Sant Singh Chatwal, said they were apparently aimed at frightening foreign investors from going to India in general and the commercial capital in particular.
Calling for strong measures, he said it is time for the international community to put its act together to fight terrorism as it could happen anywhere.
Several Indian American Muslim leaders strongly condemned the “cowardly” terrorist attacks in Mumbai, saying the strikes constitute a crime against humanity.