The 2008 Mumbai terror attack has completed its 10 years but still, the scares that terror has left on the people of Mumbai and across the country will fever fade. The pictures of 26/11 attack martyr Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan that have been tucked everywhere in his two-storey house in Bengaluru.
The two-storey National Security Guard Commando gallery is full of memories and a collection of personal articles stare from the shelves and whisper stories of valour. Major Sandeep lost his life during a gunfight with the Pakistani Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorists during the 26/11 attacks in Mumbai in the year 2008.
Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan was leading a team of NSG commandos to flush out terrorists from the Taj Palace Hotel in Mumbai when he was fatally wounded
The father of brave Major Sandeep's father recalls his son on the 10th anniversary of 26/11 Mumbai terror attack. He always had a winning attitude and liked Sachin Tendulkar for the same reason, his father Unnikrishnan said.
"Sandeep always wanted our country to win. When India lost a match, he used to be very disappointed. He also used to console me whenever an ISRO project failed. He did not like defeat," the retired ISRO officer told PTI.
Mr Unnikrishnan said, "I did not know about it. Only after he had gone I realised it. Going through his bank balance, I only found Rs. 3,000 to Rs. 4,000, though he was drawing a decent salary".
"I thought he could not save much because he could have been buying costly branded products. But his colleagues talked about his charity. One of his colleagues told me that he had borne all health expenses of his mother, who was suffering from a spine problem," he said.
Martyred Sandeep was regularly donating money to some charitable institutions. "I realised this when I started receiving reminders on the renewal of donations after his departure," he added.
He always supported nationalism. "For him, nationalism meant that you do something good for the country, not extract benefits from it. Somebody should decide whether you are a nationalist, not that you go around calling yourself a nationalist. He always opposed these people," Mr Unnikrishnan said.
The last message of the braveheart to his personnel while carrying out the operation was, "Don't come up, I will handle them." These words have left a deep impression on his troop commandos.
Major Sandeep was conferred the Ashok Chakra, the country's highest peacetime gallantry award, on 26 January 2009.