Death toll in India stampede rises to 110
Updated: 2013-10-14 09:23
NEW DELHI - Indian authorities Monday said the death toll in Sunday's stampede at a temple in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh has crossed 110.
People walk past bodies of victims killed in a stampede on a bridge, near Ratangarh temple in Datia district in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh October 13, 2013. [Photo/Agencies]
The incident happened at the historic Ratnagarh temple in the state's Datia district, where some 500,000 devotees gathered for a religious Hindu festival.
"The stampede took place after the devotees ran haywire following a rumor that a bridge they were crossing had collapsed. In the melee, many some people were crushed to death while others died when they jumped off the bridge on to a swollen river flowing underneath," a senior police official said.
So far, 110 bodies have been found and over 100 others injured in the incident were admitted to local hospitals, he said, adding the victims were mostly women and children.
Local TV channels beamed footage of funeral pyres burning throughout the night with many of the victims already cremated. State Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has ordered a high- level probe into the incident. He has also announced a compensation of 1.5 lakh rupees ($3,000) each to the families of the deceased.
In the past year, dozens of people were killed in three similar tragedies. In 2011, over 100 died at a festival in the southern state of Kerala.