Union Home Minister P Chidambaram on Friday, lauded the bravery of slain policeman Tukaram Ombale, who helped to nab the lone surviving 26/11 terrorist Ajmal Kasab.
"If Kasab had died, there would be no conclusive link to Pakistan. The fact that we were able to capture Kasab alive led to the conclusive link to Pakistan, that the terror attack was mounted from Pakistan," he said.
Chidambaram said when he first visited the city a few days after the horrific tragedy, police "reconstructed" to him the events that took place on that fateful night when Ombale was killed.
"Ombale faced two gun carrying terrorists. One was at the wheel of a car and the other, Kasab, got down from the car. Ombale was unarmed. He had no weapon in his hand. The gun in the hands of Kasab was aimed at Ombale. He held the barrel. Kasab fired from the gun and he took the bullet on his chest. Even as he was dying, he did not let go of the barrel," Chidambaram said.
Two of Ombale's colleagues overpowered Kasab and that is how Kasab was taken alive, the Home minister said. "Today we remember not only Ombale but all others, not only the martyrs of the Mumbai tragedy but all other tragedies that hit our country in the years prior to 26/11," he said.
Chidambaram lauded the Petroleum Ministry for lending a helping hand to families of the martyrs by allocating oil pump dealerships.
The minister handed over the CNG filling station dealership at suburban Borivali to family members of Ombale, whose wife Tara and daughter Vaishali were present. Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, speaking in Marathi, said he felt proud that Ombale hailed from his native Satara district.