THE TALLEST Durga idol in the world caused a stampede on Sunday, even before the pujas were to officially begin. Eleven people sustained injuries as thousands jostled to see the 88-feet tall idol at Deshapriya Park in Kolkata on Sunday afternoon.
Following this, the pandal has been shut for visitors. Since early Sunday, on Panchami, there was a huge rush at the pandal. Traffic was thrown out of gear, bringing vehicular movement to a standstill.
As visitors thronged the pandal, the number kept on increasing. Suddenly, due to overcrowding, some people fell, resulting in chaos. The pandemonium was such that Kolkata Police Commissioner Surajit Kar Purkayastha, along with other senior officers, had to come at the pandal. With traffic thrown out of gear due to the rush, the police chief had to take the Metro to arrive at the area. From there, he walked to the pandal.
“A lot of people have been coming here… The committee members did not anticipate such a crowd and had not planned accordingly. As of now, the pandal has been shut,” Purkayastha said.
The puja committee members, however, blamed the police for the accident.
“We had taken all steps that police authorities had suggested. Only two or three people had been injured. We have helped one of the injured get admitted to a private hospital,” said one of the organisers.