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City of dreams or two nations

Mumbai, Aug. 14: An India on the move and an India barely moving ' both young ' came into conflict in the city of India’s dreams with tragic results two days before Independence Day.

Leishichon Saraiza, 23, came to Mumbai looking for a job. Her cousin Ngakuini Raleng, 20, had quit a job in a five-star to chase a better one in Dubai. And semi-literate Uzer Patel, 28, from a Muslim ghetto of Jogeswari didn’t have one.

At the Gateway of India, the three met yesterday. Saraiza lost her life, Raleng is struggling for hers and police are struggling to find out from Patel the why of his act.

“He tells us he was feeling guilty that he had hurt his father, and wanted to be punished. He says he didn’t want to kill the girls, but do something that would have attracted the attention of the police,” police sub-inspector S. Kadam said.

Patel slit the throat of Saraiza and stabbed Raleng in front of hundreds of people outside Taj Mahal Hotel where the Indian cricket team was being selected.

The police say Patel has an “unsound mind”, but his shocked family denies it. The youngest of four children, Patel dropped out of school in Class V, and did odd jobs. He was unemployed for the past few months.

On Saturday morning, he asked for Rs 500 and when his father refused stabbed him and ran out with the kitchen knife in hand.

Of his victims, Saraiza had arrived in Mumbai a few days ago from Ukhrul in Manipur.

Raleng, who had worked at the JW Mariott hotel and was carrying the Dubai number of a friend, had taken Saraiza on a tour of Mumbai.

They strolled on the promenade and clicked photos with the gateway in the backdrop and the sea in season stretching out like a vast gulf of opportunity. It was around quarter to six. Minutes later, the other India assaulted them.

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