2 die of suffocation at Mathura's famous temple on Janmashtami
Uncontrolled footfall at Mathura's Banke Bihari temple in UP on the occasion of Janmashtami left two dead and seven injured during Mangla Aarti on Friday. As per local media reports, the crowd inside the temple was many times over the prescribed capacity. Some devotees had fainted near the exit gate, which restricted movement and pilgrims began getting suffocated due to high temperature and humidity.
Why does this story matter?
- The Mangla Aarti of Banke Bihari temple takes place only on Janmashtami, which is once a year and it attracts pilgrims not only from around the country but abroad as well.
- Devotees throng Mathura and Vrindavan for Janmashtami which is celebrated as the birth of Lord Krishna.
- This region is revered as his birthplace and witnesses heavy footfall during the festival.
Authorities failed to control the crowd
Mathura SSP said that devotees had fainted near Gate no. 1 and Gate no. 4, due to which movement was disrupted. Local media reported that despite the District Magistrate, SSP, Municipal Commissioner and police force being present on the spot at that time, they failed to control the crowd. At the time an estimated one lakh pilgrims were inside the temple, reported Amar Ujala.
Uttar Pradesh CM Office expressed its condolences
#UPCM @myogiadityanath ने जनपद मथुरा के बांके बिहारी मंदिर हादसे में हुई जनहानि पर गहरा शोक प्रकट किया है।— CM Office, GoUP (@CMOfficeUP) August 20, 2022
मुख्यमंत्री जी ने दिवंगतों की आत्मा की शांति की कामना करते हुए शोक संतप्त परिजनों के प्रति संवेदना व्यक्त की है।
Deceased hailed from Noida and MP
As the crowd was in a disorderly fashion, the pilgrims who had fainted and fell down were stomped over by many people. The deceased pilgrims included a man and a woman. They were identified as Noida Sector 99 resident Nirmala Devi and Vrindavan resident Ram Prasad Vishwakarma (65), who originally hailed from Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh. Vishwakarma's wife sustained injury as well.
Injured being treated in different hospitals
The entire area was very overcrowded due to the festival and people were queued up from the temple to the streets. As pilgrims began falling unconscious, it triggered a stampede. The injured are undergoing treatment in Ramakrishna Mission in Vrindavan, Braj Healthcare and district hospital. Both victims were declared brought dead.