Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Moshe Holtzberg, the Israeli child who survived the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks in 2008, in Jerusalem on Wednesday. His grandfather had earlier said that the now 11-year-old was "excited and emotional" ahead of his meeting with the Prime Minister.
Inviting him to India, PM Modi told Moshe: "Anytime you can come to India, anytime you can go. We will give you and your family a long-term visa." 'Baby Moshe' — as he is referred to by millions of Indians who were moved by his story — was a toddler when the attacks happened.
"Dear Mr Modi, I love you and your people in India," Moshe told PM Modi upon meeting him in Jerusalem on Wednesday.
"Moshe will grow up to be a Rabbi and return to India to head Mumbai's Nariman House (also known as Chabad House). He loves football," his grandfather Rabbi Shimon Rosenberg told NDTV.
"PM Modi has invited me to India and you will come with me," Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who accompanied PM Modi, told Moshe.
Rabbi Shimon had earlier told PTI:
"Moshe is excited and emotional. We all are. We attach a lot of importance to the visit of Modi to Israel and his deciding to meet us. I could not believe my ears when I got a call from the Indian ambassador saying that Prime Minister Narendra Modi wants to meet us."
He added: "India has given too much love to Moshe and all of us. God bless India and Prime Minister Modi. It is nice to know that we have not been forgotten and that Indians share our pain."
In 2008, terrorists had stormed into Mumbai's Nariman House and taken the toddler, shortly before his second birthday, and his parents hostage along with several other tourists. Sandra Samuels, Moshe's Indian nanny, was also present inside the building but hid in a room downstairs.
When Samuels heard the baby crying, she emerged from the room she was hiding in only to find Moshe standing between the bodies of his parents — Rabbi Gavriel and Rivka Holtzberg, the directors of Nariman House. She grabbed the child and ran away from the building. Nariman House was shut down following the attack and then reopened in 2014 after renovation.