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India: Temple stampede kills 11 in eastern India

10th Aug 2015
India: Temple stampede kills 11 in eastern India
By Mubasshir Mushtaq

 

MUMBAI, (AA): 11 Hindu pilgrims were killed and 50 others injured on Monday morning at a stampede outside a famous temple in eastern India.

The stampede happened in Jharkhand state’s Baidyanath temple as pilgrims scrambled for priority after the temple gate opened at 4.30 a.m. (11 p.m. GMT), the Times of India reported.

State police officials have confirmed the death of 11 pilgrims, including a woman.

According to the Deoghar district’s deputy police commissioner, over 100,000 pilgrims visit the temple on Mondays — considered an auspicious day — in the ongoing Hindu month of Sawan to offer holy water from the river Ganges.

Jharkhand’s chief minister Raghubar Das announced compensation of $3,136 to the next of kin of the deceased.

“Pained at loss of lives due to the stampede in Jharkhand. My thoughts & prayers are with the families of the deceased in this hour of grief,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted minutes after speaking to Das. “I pray that the injured recover quickly.”

Religious stampedes are commonplace in India where many pilgrims die every year at different religious sites in the country.

In 2007, another stampede at Baidyanath temple killed five and injured 11 others.

[Photo: Devotees perform Lakshmi Puja, a Hindu religious prayer, on the occasion of Diwali at Swaminarayan Temple, Dadar locality, a Mumbai suburb, India on October 23, 2014. Photographer: Imtiyaz Shaikh/Anadolu Agency]

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