12 dead, 14 injured in Vaishno Devi shrine stampede

Twelve people were killed and 14 injured on Saturday in a stampede at the Mata Vaishno Devi shrine in Jammu and Kashmir’s Reasi district.

Officials of the shrine said the stampede occurred when a large number of devotees entered the Mata Vaishno Devi Bhawan without permission slips.

“Large number of devotees had come to pay obeisance at the shrine to mark the new year. The stampede occurred around 2. 45 am today.

“It took place outside the sanctum sanctorum of the shrine. Senior officials of the government and the shrine board are on the spot.

“Prime Minister Narendra Modi is personally monitoring the relief and rescue operation,” officials said.

The PMO also announced an amount of Rs 2 lakh each for the dead. The PMO said that the amount would be given to the families of those who lost their lives, The injured would be given Rs 50,000, the PM’s Office added.

Jammu and Kashmir Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha on Saturday ordered a high level inquiry into the stampede at Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine.

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