Modi moshe
Modi meets Moshe in Israel.Getty

Moshe Holtzberg, otherwise known as Baby Moshe, has come to India for the first time after his parents were brutally gunned down by Pakistani terrorists in the infamous 26/11 Mumbai attack in 2008.

Who is Baby Moshe?

The militants who belonged to the Islamic outfit, Lashkar-e-Taiba had reached Mumbai via the Arabian Sea in inflatable speedboats. On docking in Colaba, one of the oldest and busiest areas in Mumbai, the extremists split their ways. 

That same day, they launched  a synchronised shooting and bombing attacks in 12 different locations in Mumbai including the the Jewish centre, where Moshe lived with his parents. 

The 11-year-old boy, who arrived in Mumbai on Tuesday morning, was only two years old when he lost his parents. He is one of the youngest survivors of the terror attacks that killed hundreds of people. 

Moshe was also one of the three survivors who escaped the mass slaughter when two terrorists barged into the Chabad House, also known as Nariman House, in Colaba — one of eight synagogues in Mumbai — and took his parents and six others hostages.

  • baby moshe
    Two-year-old Moshe Holtzberg is held by his grandmother Yehudit Rosenberg and domestic help Jackie during a condolence prayer meeting in a synagogue, for those killed by armed militants at a Jewish centre in 'Nariman House' in Mumbai December 1, 2008.Reuters
  • Moshe's father Gavriel and mother Rivka Holtzberg
    Moshe's father Gavriel and mother Rivka HoltzbergGetty

While Moshe's father Gavriel and mother Rivka Holtzberg, who was five months pregnant at the time, were killed in the attack, the toddler was fortunately rescued by his nanny Sandra Samuel, who found him crying beside his parents' bodies.

Moshe's parents, who used to run the Jewish religious centre, had along with the other hostages been tortured by the terrorists before they were indiscriminately shot at, claimed reports.

After the attack, the two-year-old was taken to Israel, where he lived with his maternal grandparents Shimon and Yehudit Rosenberg.

Why has he returned to India?

Moshe, who was scheduled to visit Mumbai at the age of 13, has come to India as he was invited by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to Israel in 2017.

Moshe will be present at the inauguration ceremony of the memorial for his parents and all other victims of 26/11 attacks at Nariman House on Thursday.

His visit is of great significance to his grandparents and the current Rabbi Israel Kozlovsky, as this is the first time Moshe is visiting the city and building where his parents were killed.

Modi moshe
Modi meets Moshe in Israel.Getty

"We're excited to see Baby Moshe visit for the first time the very place where his life was miraculously saved. Baby Moshe is no longer a baby but he will always remain so in our hearts. His visit with Israeli Prime Minister will be to unveil our Living Memorial project to commemorate and remember all the names of all the victims of the 26/11 attack," Kozlovsky told the media.

"This is the building where he received his last hug and kiss from his parents. The wellness of this child is of utmost importance for Jewish, Indian and Israeli nations," the current Rabbi said while explaining the significance of the event.

Modi moshe
Moshe’s father Gavriel and mother Rivka Holtzberg.Getty

The 11-year-old survivor will also be visiting the Gateway of Mumbai.

Moshe, who studies in a yeshivah (a religious school for the Jews) is being brought up in an orthodox manner. His grandparents hope he will become the chief Rabbi of Mumbai when he grows up.