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The Indian Herald

The Indian Herald
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January 14, 2012

Twelve killed in stampede at Shia shrine on Chehallum in Madhya Pradesh

Twelve persons including four women were killed during a stampede at the Husain Tekri shrine in Jaora (Ratlam) in Madhya Pradesh on Saturday.

The incident occurred when thousands of Muslims had gathered to observe Chehallum, which falls on the 40th day of Yaum-e-Ashura, the martyrdom of Imam Husain.

This year just one gate was opened to the place where the ritual of walking of fire takes place in Jaora. The rush caused the stampede and 12 persons died in the incident. Tens of thousands of people including pilgrims had gathered at Husain Tekri.

The injured were taken to hospital. Husain Tekri Sharif is a famous shrine in Central India that is frequented by Shia and Sunni Muslims apart from  Hindus. On Muharram and Chahallum, the faithful walk on fire to express their sorrow over the battle of Karbala.

Even after the mishap, nearly 30,000 people were present, to resume the ritual. Despite appeals to disperse, people remained at the shrine, waiting for their turn. Meanwhile, local dailies reported that police officials suspected the deaths might have been due to cold and asphyxiation also.

In the zeal to rush towards the 'rauza', many people got trampled and crushed. People from other countries had also arrived here for the occasion. The deaths came to light at around 1:30 am at night. The identities of all the persons who died are yet to be known.

Home Minister Umashankar Gupta and DGP SK Rout rushed to Ratlam after the report of stampede. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has also announced financial compensation for the kin of those who died in the mishap at Jaora. A magisterial inquiry has been ordered.

TIH Bureau

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