HC seeks report on Sabarimala stampede

THE Kerala High Court on Monday directed the police, forest and temple affairs departments to submit a detailed report on the stampede at Pullumedu in which 102 Sabarimala pilgrims were killed on Saturday.

While considering a case related to Sabarimala, the division bench, which is monitoring the issues at the shrine, asked the departments to furnish the report on the cause of the tragedy by Thursday. The bench, comprising Thottathil Radhakrishnan and P S Gopinanthan, said the government had ignored the court’s warnings on the safety of the pilgrims.

On January 5, following the death of a pilgrim in Sabarimala in a minor stampede, the court had observed that the movement of pilgrims should be cut down to prevent such tragedies.

The division bench came down on the government for its lack of co-ordination among departments which have a stake in the smooth running of the festival. Besides, it also asked the government to rush transport to help the pilgrims who were stranded in the forest.