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From: Coconut breaking ritual led to stampede
Superintendent of Police C P Kumbhar said that the coconut-breaking ceremony caused the ground outside the temple doors to become wet and slippery. Some of the pilgrims, who were dancing with an idol of a goddess over their heads, fell and got trampled by devotees coming in.
Kumbhar said that the initial news of people getting trampled over caused consternation amongst the devotees waiting for their turn. They turned violent and started torching the shops and pandals on the narrow route leading to the temple on a hillock.
The fire caused the gas cylinders, used for cooking, to explode which created panic among the huge queue of worshippers.
Originally posted by Valhall
I hope the smaller number is more accurate.
From: Temple stampede kills over 300, hundreds injured
[India News]: Mumbai, Jan 25 : A stampede caused by an electrical short circuit killed over 300 people at a highly revered Hindu hill shrine near Maharashtra's Satara town Tuesday in one of the worst tragedies of its kind.
At least 1,500 people were injured and many were reported missing.
The exact sequence of the tragedy, however, remained unclear.