September 11, 2001 Tuesday USA:
Four passenger airliners—which all departed from airports in the U.S. East Coast bound for California—were hijacked by 19 al-Qaeda terrorists to be flown into buildings. Two of the planes, American Airlines Flight 11 and United Airlines Flight 175, were crashed into the North and South towers, respectively, of the World Trade Centre complex in New York City. Within an hour and 42 minutes, both 110-story towers collapsed with debris and the resulting fires causing partial or complete collapse of all other buildings in the World Trade Centre complex, including the 47-story 7 World Trade Centre tower, as well as significant damage to ten other large surrounding structures. A third plane, American Airlines Flight 77, was crashed into the Pentagon—the headquarters of the United States Department of Defence—in Arlington County, leading to a partial collapse in the Pentagon’s western side. The fourth plane, United Airlines Flight 93, initially was steered toward Washington, D.C., but crashed into a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, after its passengers tried to overcome the hijackers. In total, the attacks claimed the lives of 2,996 people (including the 19 hijackers) and caused at least $10 billion in property and infrastructure damage. It was the deadliest incident for fire fighters and law enforcement officers in the history of the United States, with 343 and 72 killed respectively.
By November it was clear that the master mind behind these terrorist attacks was a man called Osama Bin Laden. The same man who CIA mocked as an Afgan-tribal who lived in caves and travelled on donkeys became the most wanted man on earth overnight. His images kept flashing on television sets across USA.
Morning 5:00 AM, December 25, 2001, Tuesday New York:
There were strict orders from the Sheriff’s Department to keep a close watch over the neighbourhoods. They had unconfirmed reports from FBI of another attack from al-Qaeda on the Christmas day. So James Morgan , a senior deputy in the NYPD (New York City Police Dept.) was extra cautious while patrolling down town Manhattan. His friend and fellow patrolling officer Ryan Fisher was off-duty that day. The reason being his desire for a comfy X’mas eve with his girlfriend Roveena. But the 45 year old, barrel chested James Morgan was not bothered. For him duty was everything. After he meticulously patrolled the peaceful Manhattan China Town, he entered the “Curry Row“, famous for Indian Resturants, located in the East Village. He casually glanced at the closed doors with the Christmas stars glowing outside many of them. This was a peaceful place and was devoid of much trouble. Indians hardly looked for trouble unlike other Asian or Arab dwellers of NY. As he headed for the next street, he abruptly stopped the Patrol Car. Even now people were scared to come out into streets. The 9/11 had scared the shit out of them. There were hardly any people on the streets.The car screeched to a stop, skidding over the thin layer of snow flakes. Under the dim lit street lamps, he saw a poster with a strangely familiar face. Around 10 houses in a row had the poster of a man with a beard stuck to it’s door. Morgan smelt trouble.
Deputy Morgan lowered the window to take a closer look as the cold December wind slapped his skin. But what was more shocking was the face of the person on the poster that teasingly smiled at him. He looked so much like a godly incarnation and the face of global terror at the same time. There was a strange glow in those eyes. Something divine which seemed to pierce even the darkness and touch Morgan’s heart. Morgan could not believe what he was seeing. Around 10 houses boldly carried the posters of the “most wanted man on earth”.The beard , those sparkling eyes and the pristine white robes that resembled prophet….
Morgan went for his radio in a flash.
“Patrol man Morgan here… there is a situation…over”
“Yes Morgan…wazzup there…” a sweet female voice answered his emergency.
“Be serious Martha… get me the Sheriff over the line…” there was a kind of deadly urgency in his voice.
“What is the matter Morgan??” Martha questioned with concern in her voice.
“Give the fucking call to Sheriff…will you? There is an emergency situation out here on the 6th street…”
He waited for seconds that seemed like hours and then a sleepy voice broke the scratchy silence of his radio:
“Yess Morgan…What is it this time? Robbery or murder…” Sheriff Ricardo Thomson boomed over the speakers
“Sir there is situation here at the “Curry Row”, East Village 6th Street…”
“What is it..?”
“Sir almost 10 houses have Osama Bin Laden’s poster stuck over their doors … I can smell trouble…”
Sheriff Ricardo felt as if the Earth was slipping from under his feet.
“What the Fuck Morgan? Are you sure… ” he barked over the micro phone
“Damn sure sir..it’s him…”
“Morgan… can you see any activities there?”
“No Sir. but things look spooky Sir…no one in the streets and I can smell trouble…”
“Morgan… I will send a team up there… just move away from there to the next avenue… stay put down and keep an eye over there…be careful…”
And the radio went dead.The Sheriff was swift with his decisions and words.
Slowly Morgan drove to the far end of the opposite street, made a U turn and parked his car facing the Curry Row. He hid himself under the shadows and watched intently. Nothing happened for 10 minutes, then a car sped through the 6th Street. From the head lamps he gathered that there were cops inside that car. They slowed down near the houses that hosted the posters of Osama Bin Laden, but did not stop. They came towards straight towards him. His radio came to life.
“Sheriff Thomson here…it is HIM. Morgan remain where you are. Calling in more forces and Martha… you get me the FBI on this one…”
“Positive…” replied Morgan
“Right away Sheriff…” confirmed Martha.
“Who the hell put up HIS posters over their door Morgan?” Sheriff Thomson barked over the radio.
“Beats me sir…” was the only reply Morgan could give 😦
5:30 AM FBI Head Quarters, 26 Federal Plaza, New York
FBI agent-detective Harish Modi of the Internal Security Command was cheerfully having beer with his fellow american agents. He was over 6 feet tall, and well built. Wearing white cotton shirt, folded till his elbow and black formal trousers with the FBI badge glowing over his left waist, he meant business. His handsome stubbles, shrewd eyes and battle beaten physique reflected command and intelligence from top to bottom. It was Christmas and that called for celebration. But unlike previous years, this year’s celebrations at FBI HQ was kept low profile. Harish was an American by birth. Though his roots were still in Gujarat (India), for almost two generations his family members had lived, worked and died as Americans. He was an American to his core and hated terrorists.
As they were about to cut the X’mas cake, the phone rang and the emergency lights blared red. Sure there was some crisis as the caller ID indicated Sheriff, NYPD at the other end. Harish picked the call:
“Hello, Harish Modi… FBI HQ New York…” he introduced himself
“Sheriff here…there is a situation…” And Sheriff Thomson’s words gave the scare of a lifetime to Detective Modi.
In less than 15 minutes, a team of FBI agents led by Detective Modi were on their way to 6th street, down town Manhattan. He kept wondering why a peaceful Indian settlement would have Osama Bin Laden’s posters put up over their doors? It gave him goosebumps when he thought about the possibility of terrorist coup of American Indians who lived in the 6th street. It was only a few weeks since Al-Qaeda had threatened to attack Indians. Could this be it? Harish Modi found his body going numb with fear.As they neared the avenue, surprisingly Mr.Rudy Giuliani’s (NYC Mayor) voice cracked over the Radio.
“Detective Modi… Mayor here. Is everything OK on the ground? I’m here at the Sheriff’s office…”
“We are heading for the troubled zone Sir.. Will update you once we gauge the situation..over..” Modi was shocked to see the situation getting escalated now.
“Do we need to get the President’s office into this son?” There was grave fear in the Mayor’s voice.
Detective Modi thought for a moment and replied:
“Not until I get back to you Sir…” and the radio went dead.
The black GTA FBI truck slowed to a stop as it neared the houses with medium size posters stuck over their doors and Modi along with his 15 member commando team disembarked from the rear. They looked highly lethal in their black sophisticated commando suit.
Modi with his team crouched towards the first house cautiously like leopards going for the kill. The sun had still not come out. But for the dim street lamps, it was still dark. As they reached the pavement of the first house, Modi suddenly stopped and lowered his MP5/10 submachine gun. He stared at the door and took off his helmet. His fellow commandos were surprised and asked him what the matter was in sign language. Modi did not reply, but he walked towards the house as if he was going to buy a Coke. While others watched in complete horror, Modi went to the door of the house and tore the poster. He looked at it for a long time and started laughing. He laughed and laughed as if he had gone mad. He fell down and giggled thunderously in front of the house as his team mates watched him completely clueless.
Suddenly there was movement inside the house and lights came to life over the porch. A middle aged man opened the door. He was literally shocked as 14 semi-automatic MP5/10 rifles stood menacingly aimed at his chest. He was equally surprised to see an officer rolling in front of the house with a poster in one hand and a riffle in the other.
Suddenly Modi realised he had gone a little overboard and stopped laughing.
“Sorry guys… this thing just beat the air out of me…this is…”but he could not stop laughing, then realized that a resident of the house was watching the show dumbfounded.
“Sir..is there any problem?” the middle aged Indian man muttered. He looked as if he would pee in his pyjamas any moment.
“Opps sorry sir…” Modi apologised to the Indian and instructed his team to lower the guns. Then he asked :
“When is he coming and what is the fee you are charging…?”
The Indian looked relieved now and replied with a sigh:
“Today around 11:00 AM sir and the entry is free…in case you wanna join us…”
“Sorry for bothering you sir… can I keep the poster?
“Off Course sir.. you can keep it…”
“Thank you sir…and Merry Christmas..” Modi thanked him.
“Merry Christmas officers…” the Indian man replied with a smile and closed the door.
Detective Harish Modi walked back towards the truck and his team followed the suit. Their nerves were relaxed and tensed at the same time. Modi spoke over the radio to the Sheriff
“Yes Mr. Modi… is everything all right?”
“Yes Mr. Sheriff… everything is A-OK… In case you wanna experience The Art of Living, feel free to drop by…the entry is free…”
“What…”Sheriff shouted over the radio, but Modi cut the call and was on his way back to FBI HQ.
The entire FBI team had a hearty laugh looking at the poster of Sri Sri Ravishanker, but made sure they attended his session. So did Sheriff Thomson, Mayor Rudy Guilani and most important of all, Patrolman Morgan.
From that day, till he retired from his official service, Partolman James Morgan was nicknamed “Bin-Laden Morgan”.
**Based on a true incident from Kerala.
***This is a story written with a good intention and please do not mix religious sentiments with this. The story showcases the level to which Americans felt insecure post 9/11 and many such funny incidents have occurred. Kindly read it and have a laugh. If possible forget this story. It is not my intention to hurt anybody’s religious sentiments.
Follow my upcoming novel at