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Stampede at Godavari Maha Pushkaram 2015 Could Have Been Avoided

The Godavari Maha Pushakaralu returned after 144 years but so is the tragedy with 27 killed in a stampede that took place this morning between 7.30 am and 8 am with mostly elderly people being the victims.

Ironic but the trigger to panic stampede was caused when people rushed towards one of the gates at Kotagummam ghat on the banks of the Godavari to take a quick holy dip. The sudden influx of devotees caused stampede that could not be controlled by police or organisers.

Similar to Kumbh Mela in the north, pushkarams are not new here but this year being Maha Pushakaram that comes once in 144 years, the rush was unexpectedly huge. Reacting to the stampede, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu said he would stay put at Rajahmundry.

Naidu has taken to Twitter to send messages to the devotees not to panic and cause stampede.  “This is very unfortunate and shocking. I have come here many times to review arrangements to ensure smooth conduct of the event. But some problems cropped up in execution,” he said.

Originally 6 ghats have been planned but only 3 ghats have been opened, said devotees.The government of Andhra Pradesh earlier said enormous arrangements have been made installing 458 CCTV cameras and deploying 4,000 priests, 15,000 sanitation workers, 3,500 swimmers and 18,000 police personnel.

However, Congress Party spokesman Chiranjeevi criticised the arrangements made saying all claims have been proved futile with the stampede.

In fact, Naidu’s review meeting covered everything about Pushkaralu from entertainment to sleeping in AC buses but not about opening more ghats to reduce the morning rush. Moreover, his presence in one of the ghats has added rush elsewhere. 

Here are some pictures flashed on social media network Twitter:  

 

Here are some Emergency contact Telephones Numbers/ Helpline Numbers in Rajahmundry:

EMERGENCY CONTACT :

RAJAHMUNDRY
Ambulance Service Telephone
EMRI 108
Governement HQ Hospital 91 – 883 – 2473022
Abhaya Emergency Hospital 91 – 883 – 2479337
Bollineni Hospital 91 – 883 – 2445195
Krishna Poly Clinic 91 – 883 – 2467935
Rajahmundry Orthopedic Hospital 91 – 883 – 2473603
St. Mary’s Ambulance Service 91 – 883 – 2461979
Pharmacy Store Telephone
Apollo Pharmacy 91 – 883 – 2432333
Annapurna Pharmacy 91 – 883 – 2473954
Gavarraju Medicals 91 – 883 – 2476712
Swatantra Hospital 91 – 883 – 2438082
Hospital Telephone
Siddhartha Emergency Hospital 91 – 883 – 2473603
Swatantra Trauma & Emergency Services 91 – 883 – 2465434
Government Hospital 91 – 883 – 2576027
Blood Bank Telephone
Jagruthi Voluntary Blood Bank 91 – 883 – 2443612
Swatantra Trauma & Emergency Services 91 – 883 – 2465438
Dhanwantari Blood Bank 91 – 883 – 2473050
Disaster Emergency Telephone
Police Control room 100
Fire Control room 101
Fire – Innespeta 91 – 883 – 2444101
Fire – Aryapuram 91 – 883 – 2445110
Crime 1090
Traffic 1073
Police Station Telephone
1 Town 91 – 883 – 2471033
2 Town 91 – 883 – 2471133
3 Town 91 – 883 – 2471043
Traffic Police Station 91 – 883 – 2442933

 

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