At Least 60 Killed in Stampede at Religious Event in India as Officials Launch Investigation

At least 60 people were killed during a stampede at a religious gathering in northern India, according to reports

Published Time: 02.07.2024 - 19:31:18 Modified Time: 02.07.2024 - 19:31:18

At least 60 people were killed during a stampede at a religious gathering in northern India, according to reports.

Officials said that the incident happened during a satsang, or prayer event, with a Hindu religious leader in the Mughal Garhi village in the Hathras district of Uttar Pradesh, which is located approximately 120 miles away from New Delhi, according to CNN, BBC and the Associated Press.

"The incident happened due to overcrowding at the time when people were trying to leave the venue," Hathras district administrator Ashish Kumar said, per Reuters.

District police said at least 60 people have been confirmed dead as a result of the stampede, and that the numbers could rise, according to the outlets. More than 150 people were also admitted to hospitals, according to AP.

The stampede reportedly happened after several people rushed out of a makeshift tent, where the religious event took place, due to the heat inside the tent, according to AP. Video obtained by the outlet showed that the tent had collapsed inward.

The venue had been permitted to host about 5,000 people, but 15,000 showed up, the AP reported, citing local reports. Police had approved the event and officials had been on duty as it hap -

pened “for maintenance of law and order and security,” according to CNN.

One witness, Shakuntala Devi, told the Press Trust of India news agency, per AP: “People started falling one upon another, one upon another. Those who were crushed died. People there pulled them out.”

Following the news, Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi shared in a post on X (formerly known as Twitter) that he was briefed on the matter and that the government is “engaged in providing all possible assistance to all the victims.”

He added, “My sympathies are with those who have lost their loved ones in this. Along with this, I wish a speedy recovery for all the injured.”

In a post on X, Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Yogi Adityanath said, “The loss of life in the unfortunate accident in Hathras district is extremely sad and heart-wrenching.”

He also noted in his message that officials were dispatched to the incident site and that a team has been formed to investigate what caused the stampede. "Instructions have been given to the concerned officials to conduct relief and rescue operations on war footing and to provide proper treatment to the injured," he wrote.

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