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Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu, Moshe Holtzberg unveil memorial for 26/11 victims

The Chabad House was one of the targeted sites of the 26/11 Mumbai terror strikes in which the Moshe’s young parents - Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg and Rivka were gunned down.

india Updated: Jan 18, 2018 23:43 IST
Yesha Kotak
Yesha Kotak
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Benjamin Netanyahu,Moshe Holtzberg,baby Moshe
Moshe Holtzberg, who survived during the 2008 Mumbai attacks, presents a souvenir to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at Chabad House in Mumbai on January 18.(REUTERS)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu along with Moshe Holtzberg, popularly known as baby Moshe, unveiled the ‘living memorial’ dedicated to the victims of 26/11 attacks in Mumbai on Thursday.

A plaque in memory of Moshe’s parents, Rabbi Gavriel and Rivka Holtzberg, was also set up on the second floor of Chabad House ( Nariman House) where they were killed during the attack by terrorists.

Speaking at the private event, Netanyahu said, “What happened here represents the polar opposites of love and hate, the hatred perpetrated by the terrorists, but it also expressed tremendous love.”

Moshe gifted a replica of the book, that he has back home in Israel with a bullet mark, to the Prime Minister, during the event.

Addressing the media after the event, Rabbi Israel Kozlovsky, who heads the centre currently, said, “This place is remembered as a place of terror, darkness and disaster, will turn into a beacon of light from where the world will shine.”

Gavriel and Rivka Holtzberg were killed along with six others by Pakistani terrorist during 26/11 siege. The couple had come to Mumbai seven years earlier and were serving as directors of the cultural and outreach centre for the worldwide Chabad-Lubavitch movement. Moshe was saved by his Indian nanny Sandra Samuel.

Varun Sonawane, a resident of Azad Nagar, said: “Today I greeted Sandra, but she didn’t seem to recognise me. As far as Moshe is concerned, he was this cute kid that everyone in the lane played with, today he is grown up and he is back, which we feel good about,” said Sonawane.

CM seeks Israeli help

Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis on Thursday sought Israel’s help to “change the face of agriculture in Maharashtra” as he invited Israeli companies to invest in the state.

Speaking at the India-Israel Business Summit, which was also attended by Netanyahu, Fadnavis said: “With the help of technology and experience of Israeli players, ours will prove to be the best water grid”.

The state government also signed a memorandum of understanding with an Israeli company to set up a water grid in Marathwada for mitigation of drought.

First Published: Jan 18, 2018 23:42 IST