Holtzberg family removes objections to new Mumbai Chabad


(JTA) — The family of murdered Chabad emissaries Gabriel and Rivky Holtzberg has removed their objections to the reconstruction of the Chabad house in Mumbai.

The family last week removed its complaints against the Chabad-Lubavitch movement at the Indian Charity Commission, and formally recognized Chabad as the trustee of the Nariman House.

The Holtzbergs were killed in the center along with four visitors in the November 2008 attacks on several Mumbai sites, including luxury hotels, a train station and a popular cafe. More than 170 people were killed in the attacks. The Holtzbergs’ son Moshe, then 2, was taken out of the house by his Indian nanny and survived the attack. Moshe and his nanny are now living in Israel.

"We realize that our family made some mistakes along the way and hope that people will understand that they were committed purely out of love and attachment to Gaby and Rivky," said Moshe Holtzberg, Gabriel Holtzberg’s brother, in a statement provided to JTA.
"In simple terms, our family originally reacted emotionally to the fact that the building was taking a long time to be built. It was too hard for us to accept that it could not be built right away, due to security concerns and building safety issues."

For security reasons, the Chabad house in Mumbai has been operating since the attacks from an undisclosed location under the direction of the new permanent Chabad-Lubavitch emissaries there, Rabbi Chanoch and Leah Gechtman.

In the statement, the family also apologized for accusing Chabad of mishandling donations for the reconstruction. "We realize that these allegations were completely baseless and false and are deeply sorry for them," the family’s statement said.

"We look forward to the rebuilt Nariman House being a truly fitting and lively tribute to Gaby and Rivky, complete with synagogue, tourist services and much, much more, and we know that their spirit will live on there forever proudly," the statement concluded.

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