Indian-Americans Hold Vigil in Phoenix to Honor Terror Victims

November 29, 2008

Author: Lindsey Collom

Source: The Arizona Republic

Leena Raval spent the past two days watching television for word of her uncle's fate.

He went to dinner at a restaurant at one of the hotels that came under siege in Mumbai, India, on Wednesday. She said it was the same restaurant where she last saw him two years ago.

Raval, president of the India Association of Phoenix, learned early Friday that her uncle was among the more than 150 people slain in the multiple terrorist attacks in India's financial capital.

Hours after getting the news, Raval joined a group of Indian-Americans gathered in Phoenix to honor victims of terrorism and pray for peace after the bloody attacks that shook Mumbai in recent days.

"We shouldn't let the terrorists win," Raval said. "We are not going to give in. The community has to come together. This is no longer just a war of two countries, two groups of people. This is a war of good and evil. We have to stick together and fight the evil."

The attacks started when assailants attacked 10 sites across India's financial capital Wednesday night.

Images from the war zone flashed on a projector screen as those who gathered at Bharatiya Ekta Mandir, a Hindu and Jain temple in Phoenix, asked the universal deity to banish devotees' agonies and sorrows.