The riots at Azad Maidan led to panic in the nearby colleges and hospitals.
State-run Cama and Albless Hospital, located a stone’s throw from the rioting spot, has close to 150 women and children admitted in the hospital at any given point of time.
“On hearing the firing we immediately closed the three main approach gates of the hospital,” said a medical officer at Cama hospital. The staff did not want to take any chances with the security as the hospital was attacked by LeT terrorists in 2008.
“At 3.30 pm, I was going towards Colaba when my taxi was stopped by a few people. They started banging the door and threatened the driver to come out of the taxi. They were all set to hit him, but we managed to escape,” said Nupur Rawat. When she turned back and saw vehicles engulfed by flames, she realised that it was something serious.
All shops around the Azad Maidan were shut down while the students of St Xavier’s College were trapped inside for almost 45 minutes.
“The college got over by 4.20 pm but we were not allowed to go out by the authorities. We were allowed to leave only by 5.30pm. Our parents were panicking and everybody was on the phone. Luckily nobody from our college got hurt in the incident,” said Karan Freese, student of Xavier’s College. “Some of our classmates panicked as we have never witnessed such incident before,” said Raj Betaille, another student.