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148 hostages freed from Trident Hotel

Vaihayasi Daniel & Prasanna Zore | November 28, 2008 09:24 IST
Last Updated: November 28, 2008 13:38 IST

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At least 148 hotages, mostly of foreign origin, were rescued from the Trident Hotel on Friday morning. They were escorted from the scene in a bus that was stationed at the nearby Air India building [Images].

The bus full of evacuees has been taken to Four Seasons hotel. The staff has formed a cordon outside with the police. Mid-management staff has been coming out and yelling the names of relatives. Unless the kin are there, the evacuees are not sent out.

The forces engaged the two remaining terrorists in Trident Hotel, where no gun shots or explosions were heard since late Thursday night as the security forces launched room-to-room searches. It is believed that at least one of the two terrorists has been gunned down.

Meanwhile, in dramatic scenes after day break on Friday, NSG commandos were air-dropped at the Nariman House in the midst of exchange of fire as army zeroed in on the building in which at least three terrorists are holed up.

Before commandos tightened their grip on Nariman House for the final assault, two explosions within a span of ten to 15 minutes slowed down their operation. A third explosion was heard at 4.47 am.

The media has been pushed back by about 300 yards and routes have been cleared for ambulances.

Fire brigade personnel, wearing bullet proof vests, too have been positioned near Nariman House. At least 3 fire tenders have been pressed into service.

"The operation to clean up the Nariman House is still going on," Director General of National Security Guard (NSG) J K Dutt told media persons just before choppers airdropped the commandos.

"It is just a matter of time and it will end soon," he said.

Dutt said the operations at Taj were by and large over with just one injured terrorist still holed-up in the building.

"He has been injured and I think we will be able to mop up the operation there very quickly," he said.

Additional Inputs by Savera Someshwar, Syed Firdaus Ashraf & Agencies

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