At least 12 people died amidst the crush in a religious shrine in Indian Kashmir, in the temple Mata Vaishno Devi. Another 13 were injured. The toll, however, could worsen according to local authorities: “The road leading to the shrine at the top of the hill was crowded with faithful who tried to get there during the traditional New Year prayers,” explained an official to Agence France-Presse. Rescue operations began immediately.
The incident occurred in the early hours of the new year, when it was 2.45 am in India (10.15 pm in Italy), while it was still dark on the road leading to Vaishno Devi, one of the most revered Hindu sites in the country. A witness told AFP that the point where the crowd was created is where the people who come down from the sanctuary meet those who go up. Due to the pandemic, the daily limit is 25 thousand faithful, but some witnesses claim that that number has been greatly exceeded and that several groups have entered without permission.
Tens of thousands of people visit Mata Vaishno Devi every day to offer their prayers. The temple is located in northern India, on the hills of Katra, about 30 kilometers from Jammu and is open all day, 24 hours a day. buildings that seem to form a river. Then there are also the images of the rescues. The government has called for an investigation into the incident.
– Madhaw Tiwari (@MadhawTiwari) January 1, 2022
On Twitter, the prime minister Narendra Modi he said he was “extremely saddened by the loss of life” and offered his condolences “to bereaved families”.
Extremely saddened by the loss of lives due to a stampede at Mata Vaishno Devi Bhawan. Condolences to the bereaved families. May the injured recover soon. Spoke to JK LG Shri @manojsinha_ Ji, Ministers Shri @DrJitendraSingh Ji, @nityanandraibjp Ji and took stock of the situation.
– Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) January 1, 2022
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