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Gujarat: 11 devotees killed in stampede
October 14, 2007 14:56 IST
Eleven devotees were killed and several others injured in a stampede at the famous Mahakali temple atop Pavagadh hill in Gujarat on Sunday.
"The stampede occurred between devotees who were coming down the hill and those who were climbing their way up," R K Rathod, resident district collector of Panchmahals, told PTI.
The stampede took place at an area called Patia Pul, which is a narrow uphill place that leads to the temple, he said.
"Bodies of 11 of the victims killed in the stampede are at a hospital in Halol. The situation is under control at present," he added.
The injured persons have been rushed to various hospitals in Halol and nearby towns, police said.
The Gujarat government has announced a compensation of Rs 1 lakh to the kin of the deceased and rescue operations are underway. Lakhs of devotees visit this shrine during 'navratras' every year.
The Gujarat government has ordered a magisterial inquiry into the stampede incident and two senior ministers have rushed to the spot.
"The stampede occurred in a flash. Rescue operations were conducted swiftly. The path leading to the temple is all clear now," the RDC said.
Of the 15 injured, three who are critical have been admitted at the Vadodara Hospital while the others are under treatment at the Halol Referral Hospital in Panchmahals district.
According to district officials, nearly six lakh devotees across Gujarat have already visited the shrine since morning.
The Mahakali Temple at the hilltop in Pavagadh is a famous temple and finds mention in the folklore of Gujarat.