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Ratan Tata dedicates restored Taj Hotel to terror victims

December 21, 2008 19:43 IST

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The Taj Mahal hotel [Images], ravaged during the 26/11 terror strikes, reopened on Sunday evening with its owner Ratan Tata dedicating the restored hotel to those who had lost their lives in the carnage.

"We dedicate the restored hotel to those who have lost their lives," Tata, the Chairman of Indian Hotels, the company that owns the Taj, said just before the reopening of the Tower wing of the hotel.

"We cannot be knocked down--this is a memorable day and a tribute to those who saved many lives," an emotional Tata said, adding "it gives me a great sense of pride--this is the start of a new era."

The audacious terror attack of November 26 killed 163 people in the metropolis, of which 31 died in the Taj, apart from causing extensive damage to two of the city's renowned hotels-- the Taj and Oberoi-Trident [Images].

"To us, it was a challenge to reopen the hotel within one month from attack," he said.

The heritage wing of the hotel, badly damaged in the attack, will be opened in phases starting from February, he said, adding that the entire hotel will be opened by the end of next year.

When asked about security arrangements, Tata said, "We have our plans of security which we cannot share with you."

Among the celebrities who attended the reopening ceremony were writer Shobhaa De, actor Rahul Bose [Images],
industrialist Adi Godrej [Get Quote], Uday Kotak, Kishore Biyani, and theatre personality Alyque Padamsee [Images].

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