A stampede at a Hindu festival yesterday left at least 145 people dead, including 40 children, in the mountainous north Indian state of Himachal Pradesh, according to local police.
The stampede was triggered by the collapse of iron railings along a narrow path leading to the hilltop Nainadevi temple, where tens of thousands of people had gathered for a festival that began on Saturday, police said.
Hundreds of people — mostly women and children — were trampled to the ground and many others fell down a steep slope as the panicking crowd tried to flee to safety, police and local officials said. Most of the victims died from suffocation, they said.
Bimala, a woman at the temple, told television reporters: “There were a lot of people inside and we were trying to fight for space when everyone started falling over.”