Monday, September 30, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Probe ordered into stampede

Lucknow, September 29
The Uttar Pradesh Government today ordered an inquiry into last night’s stampede at the Charbagh railway station here even as thousands of BSP supporters were still crowding platforms to catch trains to take them home.

The inquiry would be conducted by Principal Secretary (Planning) Subodh Nath Jha, a Chief Minister’s office spokesman said.

The Railways would also assist in the inquiry and Divisional Railway Manager Kamlesh Gupta had been included in the probe panel, the spokesman said. The report would be submitted to the government in a week.

Sixteen persons were killed and 50 injured in the stampede which occurred when BSP workers, returning from a rally, scrambled to get on trains.

“It will take at least two days to clear the rush as thousands of party workers, who could not reach the station last night, have started arriving,” UP Minister Swami Prasad Maurya, said. Chief Minister Mayawati, now in Jammu and Kashmir for electioneering, was constantly monitoring arrangements for sending BSP workers back home, the spokesman said.

The government had announced an ex gratia amount of Rs 25,000 each to the seriously injured and Rs 5,000 each to those with minor injuries.

An ex gratia amount of Rs 1 lakh each to the next of kin of those killed in the tragedy had been announced yesterday.

Many of the rallyists complained that they were famished .Fifty-year-old Kamla Devi of Sahar village in Muzaffarnagar district was annoyed with BSP leaders who brought her to the state capital along with 25 fellow villagers. “They had promised to provide us with food and lodging in Lucknow, but once we reached here, they abandoned us,” she said. PTI, UNI

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