UP stampede: Ashram faces criminal charges

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Pratapgarh, Mar 5: The ashram of Kripaluji Maharaj in Mangarh village, which turned into a scene of massacre on Thursday, Mar 4, is now facing a criminal charges for causing deaths due to negligence.

This comes a day after a stampede broke out in the ashram killing 63 people, all of whom were women and children.

“A case has been registered under Section 304 (A) (causing death by negligence) against Kripaluji Parishad, under the banner of which yesterday"s function was organised", Pratapgarh Superintendent of Police Mahesh Kumar Mishra is quoted as saying in a news agency report.

The ashram which is located about 60 kms from here has organised a feast for the poor. In the memory of the Maharaj"s late wife, the poor were to receive free meals, a stainless steel plate, Rs 10 in cash, a 'laddoo" and a handkerchief.

Scores of people gathered here and a stampede broke out. Besides the fatalities, over 100 people were also injured in the mishap.

Even though the state government is yet to announce a compensation for the victims, the ashram has announced a compensation of Rs 50,000 each to family of those who have lost their lives and Rs 10,000 each to injured people.

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