Hathras stampede: Supreme Court to take up on Friday PIL seeking court-monitored probe, action against those responsible for lapses : The Tribune India

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Hathras stampede: Supreme Court to take up on Friday PIL seeking court-monitored probe, action against those responsible for lapses

The petitioner has sought direction to the State of Uttar Pradesh to submit a status report and initiate legal action against those who acted negligently

Hathras stampede: Supreme Court to take up on Friday PIL seeking court-monitored probe, action against those responsible for lapses

A stampede at the congregation killed 121 people and left 28 injured, most of them women, as devotees got suffocated in the worst such tragedy in recent years. PTI file



Tribune News Service

Satya Prakash

New Delhi, July 9

The Supreme Court will take up on Friday a PIL seeking a court-monitored probe into the death of 121 people following a stampede at a religious congregation in Hathras district of Uttar Pradesh and action against those responsible for lapses.

“I have ordered listing of the plea yesterday itself,” Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud told petitioner Vishal Tiwari on Tuesday after he mentioned his petition for urgent hearing.

“It’s listed for hearing on Friday, July 12,” Tiwari later told The Tribune.

Petitioner Tiwari, an advocate, has demanded appointment of a five-member expert committee under the supervision of a retired Supreme Court judge to probe the stampede and suggest guidelines to avoid such incidents at public gatherings in future.

Tiwari sought a direction to the State of Uttar Pradesh to submit a status report and initiate legal action against those who acted negligently. He has also sought a direction to states to submit the status of medical facilities available from the block/Tehsil to the district level to deal with incidents of stampede.

“Such incident prima facie depicts the serious condition of responsibility lapse, negligence and unfaithful duty of care towards the public by the government authorities,” Tiwari submitted.

Over 2.5 lakh devotees had gathered on Tuesday in Hathras district's Phulrai village for the 'satsang' conducted by Baba Narayan Hari -- also known as Saakar Vishwahari Bhole Baba.

A stampede at the congregation killed 121 people and left 28 injured, most of them women, as devotees got suffocated in the worst such tragedy in recent years.

The Uttar Pradesh Police have registered an FIR against the organisers, accusing them of hiding evidence and flouting conditions with 2.5 lakh people gathering for the event in which only 80,000 were allowed.

The FIR alleged that the organisers hid the actual number of devotees coming to the 'satsang' while seeking permission and did not cooperate in traffic management and hid evidence after the stampede, which broke out after people gathered there stopped to collect mud from the way the baba's vehicle was passing.

The petition urged the top court to direct states to issue guidelines to prevent stampedes for the safety of the public attending such religious or other events in large numbers and submit reports on medical facilities available at various levels to deal with such stampedes or other incidents.

“There are several questions which are brewing up from this horrific incident of stampede thereby questioning the duty and lapse of state government and municipal corporations,” the petitioner said, adding the authorities failed to control the crowd at the event.

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