At least 32 people were killed and over 50 were injured after a stampede broke out during the ‘Ravan Dahan’ at a park in the heart of Bihar’s capital Patna.
Officials said the incident took place at the historic Gandhi Maidan shortly after 7pm. Over 50,000 people had gathered to witness the burning of Ravana’s effigy, a ceremony that marks the end of the Navratras.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed condolences and spoke to the Bihar chief minister to enquire about the stampede.
"The stampede in Patna is deeply saddening. I spoke to the Bihar CM about the situation.My condolences to the families of those who lost their lives and prayers with the injured," he tweeted.
The stampede in Patna is deeply saddening. I spoke to the Bihar CM about the situation.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 3, 2014
My condolences to the families of those who lost their lives and prayers with the injured.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 3, 2014
Here are some more reactions:
• Condolences over loss of lives in Patna stampede, pray for speedy recovery of the injured, tweeted President Pranab Mukherjee
• Home Minister Rajnath Singh: Deeply saddened to know that many precious lives have been lost in Patna stampede. My condolences to the bereaved families.
• Ravi Shankar Prasad (Union Minister for Communications and Information Technology, Law and Justice): Shameful that so many ppl died in Patna from where i come from on Dusshera day. Raavan Dahan happens every year at historic Gandhi Maidan. Why adequate steps were not taken? It is indeed very unfortunate. My deepest condolences with the families in this hour of grief. Government of India is very closely monitoring the situation.
• Dr. Harsh Vardhan (Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare): Saddened by tragic news of stampede deaths & injuries during Ram Leela celebrations in Patna today.My sympathies for the bereaved families.
• Congress President Sonia Gandhi expressed "shock and grief" over the deaths and injuries. "Dismayed at the unfortunate incident, Gandhi expressed the hope that the injured are being adequately attended to and conveyed her condolences to the families of those who passed away," a Congress statement said.
• Meanwhile, another Congree statement said that Rahul Gandhi "extended heartfelt condolences to families of those who lost lives in horrific #PatnaStampede during Dussehra celebrations." "He has expressed shock over the mishap. He has appealed to the admin to ensure that all measures towards relief are taken at the earliest" it added.
• AAP convener Arvind Kejriwal: Deaths due to stampede at dusshera site in Patna is extremely unfortunate. Heartfelt condolences to bereaved families
• Upendra Kushwaha, Union Minister Of State (Rural Development & Panchayati Raj): I condole the death of innocent people. The incident of stampede during Ravan Dahan at Patna Gandhi Maidan is really painful & People of Patna must keep calm & help the victims
• Sushil Kumar Modi, BJP: Very sad that till now 32 people have died in stampede during Ravana Badh in Patna. Police lack the skill of crowd management. Not the time for blame game.Dead should be handed over to their relatives & injured provided the best treatment
• Shahnawaz Hussain, BJP: Tragedy at Patna's Gandhi Maidan is sad for the country. My condolences with the affected families.
• Naveen Jindal, Congress: Deeply saddened by the news of #PatnaStampede.Condolences to those who lost their loved ones & prayrs 4 the speedy recovery of injured.
• Kiran Bedi, BJP: Stampedes are result of failure of proper planning in crowd segregation,entry and dispersal. Police arrangements issued need to examined!
• Sadananda Gowda (Railway Minister): The incident of stampede at patna is really painful.
• Nirmala Sitharaman (Union Minister of State, Commerce (Independent Charge) Minister of State, Finance): Extremely sorry to know about the loss of lives in Patna stampede. Hope& pray those injured recover soon. Condolences to grieving families.