Hathras Stampede: Analyzing the Tragic Chain of Events and Oversight

GG News Bureau
Hathras, 3rd July. 
The tragic stampede in Hathras, Uttar Pradesh, which claimed the lives of 121 individuals, was reportedly sparked by a chaotic scramble for dust stirred up by the car of a self-proclaimed godman, Suraj Pal, also known as Narayan Saakar Hari. The incident occurred during a ‘satsang’ gathering organized by his followers.

Initially approved for a crowd of around 80,000 people, the event unexpectedly drew over 2.5 lakh attendees, overwhelming the organizers’ preparations. Eyewitness accounts indicate that after the gathering, a rush ensued as devotees sought to collect dust from the godman’s vehicle, triggering the fatal stampede. Witnesses further reported that the godman’s aides, armed with sticks, attempted to control the crowd, inadvertently exacerbating the situation.

Criticism has been directed at the inadequate police presence, with only approximately 40 officers on duty to manage the massive crowd. When chaos erupted, these officers were reportedly unable to prevent the tragedy.

The aftermath has seen significant public outcry and legal action. An FIR has been filed naming Devprakash Madhukar, the main event organizer, and other unidentified individuals for alleged negligence and attempting to conceal evidence. Despite assurances from Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath of a thorough investigation, no arrests have been made yet, and the godman himself is reportedly missing.

The FIR includes charges under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including culpable homicide not amounting to murder and wrongful restraint. Chief Minister Adityanath is expected to visit Hathras to assess the situation personally, emphasizing the government’s commitment to uncovering the truth and ensuring justice.

In response to the incident, opposition leader Akhilesh Yadav has called for a comprehensive inquiry to identify systemic failures and prevent similar tragedies in the future. Meanwhile, State Police Chief Prashant Kumar has stated that all aspects of the case are under investigation, refraining from immediate conclusions regarding the godman’s culpability.

The incident sparks broader concerns about crowd management and religious gatherings’ safety protocols, prompting calls for stricter oversight and accountability in event planning and execution.

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