New Delhi: At least two people died and six were injured due to overcrowding during Janmashtami celebrations at a temple in Mathura in Uttar Pradesh, the police said on Saturday. The incident took place during midnight celebrations at Banke Bihari temple, police officials added.
The deceased have been identified as Nirmala Devi and Ram Prasad Vishwakarma who were declared dead at the hospital, police said. Another pilgrim collapsed and fainted at the exit gate of the temple which resulted in the restricted movements of the devotees. The incident occurred during Mangala Aarti. ‘During Mangla Arti at Banke Bihari in Mathura, one devotee fainted at the exit gate of the temple due to which movement of devotees was restricted. As there was a huge crowd, many inside the premises suffocated. Two people lost their lives’, said Senior Superintendent of Police, Mathura.
‘On the auspicious occasion of Janmashtami, there was a sudden surge in the number of devotees. During Aarti people rushed to the complex and this resulted into overcrowding. This is when the two died due to suffocation’, Abhishek Yadav, a senior cop in Mathura said.
Mathura is considered the birthplace of Lord Krishna. In Mathura, devotees were seen dancing to the hymns of Lord Krishna. The enthusiasm is quite similar in Krishna temples across the country. As per mythology, the birth of Lord Krishna took place at midnight. Special Prasada is distributed after the midnight rituals on Janmashtami.
Earlier, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath visited the Krishna Janmabhoomi temple in Mathura and reiterated his commitment to preserve and promote the spiritual and cultural heritage of the state. ‘Paritranaya Sadhunam Vinashaya Cha Dushkritam’, the teachings of Lord Shri Krishna, inspires our thoughts, our actions and our vision’, he said. ‘Lord Krishna arrived on this earth about 5,000 years ago from today and his ‘leelas’ are celebrated in every part of the country and the world even today’, Yogi Adityanath said.