Police battled to contain surging crowds wildly celebrating the return home Wednesday of the Indian team after lifting the inaugural Twenty20 world title against Pakistan.
Thousands braved monsoon rain to greet the cricketers off a flight from South Africa which landed in the western city of Mumbai on Wednesday morning.
Private security guards were also drafted in to cope with the crush as new captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni led his side out of Chhattrapati Shivaji International Airport.
Many children joined the throng, dancing to drum beats as the cricketers boarded an open-top bus which inched its way through a sea of supporters waving Indian flags and pictures of Dhoni.
The vividly-painted bus set off on a 30-kilometre (19-mile) drive to the Wankhede cricket stadium in south Mumbai with players taking turns to hold aloft the trophy.
Fans lit firecrackers, sang songs and waved placards as the exuberant Indian players danced and hugged each other under a heavy shower.
Policemen joined in the dancing as rose and marigold petals were thrown in the air.
India, restricted to 157-5 with the bat, fought back to bowl out Pakistan for 152 in a thrilling final on Monday in Johannesburg.
"These kids have proved themselves, they have the capacity to take us to greater heights," former chief selector Kiran More told reporters.
India media reported that the team had partied through the night in South Africa.
"We just went crazy," star fast bowler Irfan Pathan said. "Unlike other Indian teams this team celebrates in style."
Skipper Dhoni was keen to temper celebrations. "Just live in the present, keep your feet on the ground, enjoy your success but don't get carried away," he told his teammates.
The surprise win by India, who were widely criticised at home earlier this year after being knocked out of the 50-overs World Cup tournament at the first stage, prompted the government and others to rain gifts on the players.
Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel announced free round-the-world air tickets for players and their families.
The private Sahara India trading group gifted each player a new house.
The Board of Cricket Control in India promised huge rewards for the players and support staff.
Among the bigger prizes was a Porsche car for Yuvraj Singh, who hit six sixes in one over.