Chhath stampede due to rumours: Bihar govt
Patna: Ruling out administrative lapse behind the stampede during Chhath which claimed 18 lives, Bihar government on Wednesday said it was triggered by rumours and hinted at a conspiracy.
Minister in-charge of Home Department Vijay Chaudhary told the assembly that rumours that a live electric wire had fallen into the Ganga and electrocuted the water, and that the power supply had snapped, caused the tragedy.
However, the probe by Principal Secretary Home Amir Subhani found that neither had any electric wire fallen into the river, nor had any make-shift wooden bridge collapsed on November 19 at Adalatghat.
Hinting at a conspiracy behind the tragedy, he said it has come to light that an individual identified as Ashok Ghosh used the telephone number of an electricity office to report about the falling of the live wire and asked officials to snap the power supply.
The mishap was magnified due to closure of an iron gate in south of the temple at the time of stampede by some unidentified persons as part of the conspiracy. The gate was opened by senior officials which helped to contain the casualty in the stampede, he said.
Chaudhary said probe into the incident has also hinted at the `mysterious` role of an RJD MP but did not elaborate.
The minister said no administrative lapse was mentioned in the interim report submitted by the principal secretary to the home department, but if something of the kind comes to light in the final report, strict action would be taken against the guilty.
Earlier, RJD and Congress members criticised the government for the tragedy and demanded an all party committee of Assembly to investigate the incident.
Dissatisfied with the government`s reply, RJD and Congress members staged a walkout and Leader of the Opposition Abdul Bari Siddiqui said that the incident was due to administrative lapse.
Describing the incident as a "disaster management failure", he said the administrative inquiry was merely an "eyewash" and that Chief Minister Nitish Kumar had meticulously inspected the stage put up for his `Adhikar` rally, but had no time to do so for the Chhath arrangements.
CLP leader Sadanand Singh too blamed the government for the tragedy, while highlighting the absence of doctors in PMCH on that evening. He echoed RJD`s demand for an inquiry by an all party committee.
RJD Chief Whip Samrat Chaudhary, initiating the special discussion called by Speaker Uday Narayan Chaudhary, attributed the tragedy to administrative lapse.
However, JD-U MLA Poonam Devi and BJP legislator Arun Kumar Sinha defended the government and said the report had hinted at the role of an RJD MP in the tragedy.
Replying from the government side, Chaudhary said due to the wide coverage of arrangements for Chhath at Adalatghat, an "unimaginable" number of people had thronged there, causing the make-shift bridge in question to bend on one side.
He said in fact two make-shift wooden bridges were set up at Adalatghat by Patna Municipal Corporation on the demand of the puja samiti.
The opposition, the minister said, should desist from politicising the tragedy.
Chaudhary said three FIRs had been lodged in connection with the incident, including stone throwing and vandalism at Patna Medical College and Hospital.
More from India
More from World
More from Sports
More from Entertaiment
- Zee Media Exclusive: Kangana, Madhavan talk about their film 'Tanu Weds Manu Returns'
- DNA: Harmful chemicals found in Maggi, Nestle India still in denial mode
- CM Kejriwal shortlists 39 'unwanted' IAS officers in Delhi
- Rajasthan: Gujjars revive reservation agitation, block rail track
- DNA: Modi-led NDA govt's hits and misses in one year
- Zee Media Exclusive interview with Congress leader Kamal Nath
- J Jayalalithaa sworn-in as Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu
- Mumbai: One injured in shootout at Film City
- ISIS to buy first nuclear weapon from Pak?
- Mumbai: CCTV captures assailant with gun at Film City
- Dr Subhash Chandra Show: Aspiring for more than what you have!
- BJP now central pole of Indian politics: Arun Jaitley
- Zee Media Exclusive chat with 'Tanu Weds Manu Returns' cast Kangana, Madhavan
- Maharashtra FDA sends Maggi noodles for lab testing
- Mathura SSP receives death threat letter, message for PM Modi
- IPL 2015, Qualifier 2: CSK vs RCB - As it happened...
- India to soon have its own space shuttle!
- PM Narendra Modi graces Digvijay Singh's son wedding reception
- Rahul Gandhi to pressurise govt to act on one-rank-one-pension issue
- Goa Board SSC Exam Results 2015 announced
- ISIS close to buying nuclear weapon from Pakistan?
- CBSE 12th Results 2015: CBSE Board Cbse.nic.in & cbseresults.nic class 12th XII board exam Results 2015 date announced
- Manohar Parrikar visits forward areas along LoC, reviews security situation
- Businessman shot next to Amitabh Bachchan's shooting location in Mumbai Film City
- There will be no delay in appointing CIC, CVC: Jitendra Singh
- Credibility of Prime Minister's Office restored by BJP, says Arun Jaitley
- CBSE Board 10th Results 2015: Cbse.nic.in & Cbseresults.nic class 10th X board exam results 2015 date announced
- ISIS justifies raping slave girls, says Michelle Obama is 'worth $40'
- LIVE SCORE: 1st Test, Day 2 - England vs New Zealand
- Arvind Kejriwal to highlight AAP govt's 100 days work on Monday