A poem from the group honoring the memory of Keenan and Reuben
I don't know exactly where you are at this moment. But I know this... You are loved. You are surrounded by grace. I'm not sure what's ahead of you in the days to come. But I'm sure of this... You will not face it alone. You already have victory in the ways that matter most. I may not see every detail of your circumstances. But I see this... You have a God who watches over you with tender care. And wherever you are, He is already there. As you begin the New Year 2012, my friend, know that you're in my thoughts and prayers!
~ Jane Sequeira-Rodrigues
From among many, many heartfelt messages at the first Christmas without Keenan Santos and Reuben Fernandes. Touching and inspiring to know that there are many who reached out to the family in solidarity. There are lives that have merged here, bonds that have formed. All coming together in empathy in a season of cheer for facing family and friends left with memories.
Also adding here some updates since the last time.
The state has appointed advocate Ujjwal Nikam as special public prosecutor in the Amboli double murder case.
Keenan and Reuben were among four people from Maharashtra to receive the Award for Physical Bravery.
In other news, the Amboli Bar and Restaurant where the murders happened was the focus of a lot of anger for their callous attitude for not coming to the aid of the group when attacked, not assisting them in getting medical assistance for Keenan and Reuben, not having security cameras in working condition and again when they fired the one steward who did come to the help of the victims - an inexplicable move. Anyway, they have been boycotted by the people and have shut shop. GOOD.
In an unlikely fallout of the Amboli murders, the restaurant outside which the incident occurred closed down last week. Patrons had enforced a boycott of the Amboli Bar and Kitchen for dismissing the steward who rushed to help the victims, Keenan Santos and Reuben Fernandez, when nobody else did.
However, the battle is long. Another similar incident happened at Oshiwara. Luckily this time, the man had a licenced revolver and was able to scare the assailant away. Very strange that the police are calling it an incident of firing alone.
A34-year-old, identified as Swaraj Verma, was attacked by a knife-wielding man when he protested his woman friend being harassed near 5 Spice Restaurant in Oshiwara on Sunday night. Verma pulled out revolver and fired in the air, leading to chaos around 10.30 pm.
According to a complaint filed at Oshiwara Police Station, Verma and his friend were headed towards their car after dining at 5 Spice, when an unidentified man began heckling the woman. The duo ignored him, but he tried to touch her, the complaint said.
Verma got into an argument with the man, who was shouting abuses at the couple. As Verma tried to shoo him away, the man flashed a knife, and attacked him, the complaint said. Verma ducked to avoid the blow, but the knife landed on his neck.
As blood gushed out, Verma lost control and fired a round in the air from his licensed revolver, the complaint said. The man fled, even as crowds gathered at the spot. Verma went to a nearby hospital, and then to Oshiwara Police Station.
Senior Inspector Dilip Rupawate said, “There was an incident of firing. We are still verifying the facts.”
It is a strong reminder that we must not forget the loss of Keenan and Reuben so easily. Perhaps the move from his friends to have the chowk near the location of the murders named in their honor may help people keep daily in their minds the importance of creating a safe society.
The incident has caused a public outrage and shocked the citizens of Mumbai and the nation. As a result of the incident, a petition drive for change in laws against sexual harassment was signed by 1 lakh citizens of Mumbai. We appeal that the chowk which is nearby to where the incident occurred be named in remembrance of Keenan and Reuben.