We were doing a simple walk about during our first days in Mumbai. This is when we came across this cafe. I was not aware of its notoriety at the time.
We generally knew that the cafe was mentioned extensively in the novel Shantaram and its sequel The Mountain Shadow, which is why we stopped. It was particularly known as a popular hangout for foreign tourists.
The cafe became an early site of gunfire and grenade explosions during the 2008 Mumbai attacks by terrorists on Nov 26, at about 9:30 PM. The terrorists sprayed the restaurant with bullets from inside the restaurant from outside. They killed 10 persons and injured many others. The restaurant was extensively damaged during the attacks.
Afterward, the cafe became popular with many Indians to commemorate the spirit of defiance. The Leopold Cafe has preserved some of the signs of the attack as a memorial.
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