The deadly Mumbai stampede which took place on the foot overbridge linking Elphinstone Road and Parel suburban railway stations extinguished at least 22 lives and left 39 others injured. One lakh commuters take the footbridge every day. A commuter, who managed to get off the bridge, said on Friday they were stuck on the bridge for almost an hour amid heavy rain, according to a Hindustan Times report. Another angry resident said a city that will soon have a bullet train doesn’t even have a safe railway bridge, reported NDTV. Today, the Railway minister Piyush Goyal is conducting a high-level meet regarding yesterday’s stampede, as per India Today.
Here are the top things you need to know about the Elphinstone Road station stampede:
1. Sujay Panse, a commuter, said, “The stampede situation started around 10:30 am. The narrow bridge was overcrowded from about 9.45am, he said adding, no policemen came to regulate the queues, despite the presence of CCTVs. According to an Indian Express report, before any agencies assistance came it was the local residents living in the nearby Lower Parel Railway Colony rescued the people.
2. After the deadly stampede, the tender has been floated for an additional foot overbridge at the Elphinstone station, as per TOI.
3. Railway Minister Piyush Goyal directed the chief railway safety officer of the Western Railway to initiate an inquiry into the incident. Railway officials attributed the tragedy to unusual behaviour if the mob that led to panic, Indian Express reported. “Wherever there is a need for foot over bridges to be widened, we will do it immediately on high priority, ” Goyal said. He has also given one week deadline for officials to come with proper solution, as per NDTV.
4. According to survivors, two rumours started to circulate that led to panic. First, was about the short circuit, while another was created by the persons, who were in a hurry to get off the bridge, saying that the bridge would collapse, HT reported.
5. Railway minister Piyush Goyal announced that an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh will be given by the state Govt and Rs 5 lakh by the railways to the families of the deceased people. The railway minister said grievously injured will get Rs 1 lakh while the minor injured persons will be given Rs 50,000 ex-gratia.
6. The Maharashtra chief minister said his government will conduct a probe and necessary strict action will be taken. He also spoke to the cabinet secretary and commissioner of police to help the people.
7. “Heavy rainfall accompanied with an immense crowd on the bridge caused the incident. Crowd entering the station and exiting got locked on the staircase. It is an unusual incident,” Purushottam Karad, Deputy Commissioner of Police for the Western Region, was quoted as saying by Indian Express.
8. Fifteen ambulances of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), a team of doctors provided first-aid and the Fire Brigade carried out the rescue operations to shift the victims to the KEM hospital in Parel, as per IE.
9. All the injured and dead brought to the KEM hospital — the last person was brought in at 11.30 am — did not have their footwear on. Eight women were among the 22 dead. Dr Avinash Supe, KEM hospital dean said most died of asphyxia, as per IE.
10 Prime Minister Modi said, “My deepest condolences to all those who have lost their lives due to the stampede in Mumbai. Prayers with those who are injured.” Other leaders including President Ram Nath Kovind, Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee have condoled the death of people. Shiv Sena leader Sada Sarvankar demanded the resignation of railway minister Piyush Goyal.