At least three people were killed and several others were reported injured today in a stampede at Simaria Ghat in Begusarai district of Bihar, according to ANI. The stampede took place during the Kartik Purnima celebration. According to ABP News, the incident took place when people were taking the bath. There is still no official confirmation on the number of casualties but multiple TV reports suggest that this number can go up. The rescue and relief operations are on and police are trying to identify the bodies. The injured have been rushed to hospitals for treatment.
Expressing his grief over the incident, the Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has announced ex-gratia of Rs 4 lakh each to those who lost their lives in the stampede.
According to police officials, the stampede was caused by some rumour. Eyewitnesses blamed that there were no proper security arrangements in the ghat and ambulance facility was also not available. Thousands of people have thronged at various river banks across the country during the holy month of Kartik, when Lords Shiva and Vishnu are simultaneously worshipped.
Earlier in the year 2014, 33 people were killed in a stampede outside the sprawling Gandhi Maidan in Bihar after Dussehra celebrations. The tragedy struck on October 3 at the South East corner of the ground near the Exhibition road when the people who were returning after watching the “Ravana Vadh” (killing of demon king) event jostled with each other to move ahead, eyewitnesses and officials had said. Tens of thousands of people had gathered to watch the annual event at the historic Gandhi Maidan where several pockets were reportedly dimly lit when the stampede broke out.