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NRIs plan Mumbai rally for 26/11 victims on January 10

Suman Guha Mozumder in New York | January 06, 2009 10:41 IST

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Around 300 non-resident Indians from the United States will attend a solidarity rally in Mumbai [Images] January 10 to pay homage to those who lost their lives in the 26/11 terrorist strikes on Mumbai.

"It is our 'Ich bin ein Mumbaiker' moment," said Reggie Sinha, professor at the Des Moines Area Community College at Ankeny, Iowa, and one of the architects behind the Mumbai Chalo campaign. "All that is needed to attend the rally is a flower in our hands and a prayer on our lips."

He said the community, watching the events on television, was deeply moved. "It is imperative, I thought, that the global community comes together at this very tragic moment to express sorrow and a deep sense of gratitude for all those who died protecting and fighting pure evil," said Sinha, who has created a Web site to commemorate the event.

The January 10 date was fixed so that NRIs who are attending the seventh annual Pravasi Bharatiya Divas at Chennai, which ends January 9, can travel to Mumbai for the event and still make it for the January 12 inauguration of the Vibrant Gujarat event.

In order to make the Mumbai trip doubly useful, a business seminar has been tentatively scheduled as well.

Sinha said the rally is open to NRIs as well as friends of India, and that several foreign tourists are also expected to attend.

He has called for donations to help the families of victims, and said the goal is to reach a minimum of $100,000.

"Donors will have a convenient way to send money once the modalities of transfer and the purpose of the fund have been clearly identified. Stringent conditions imposed by the US Department of Homeland Security have slowed the transfer process. For that reason, Mumbai Chalo is partnering with the United Way organisation," he said, adding that several individuals and organizations in the US and in India have already made oral commitments to contribute.






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