May 6, 2016 1:39:43 pm
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Friday visited the ongoing Simhastha Kumbh Mela site where seven people were killed and around 90 others injured when heavy rains accompanied by lightning and squall flattened and uprooted makeshifts tents of pilgrims.
Chouhan arrived at the Kumbh Mela at around 4 AM, and after visiting the affected area he returned to Bhopal at 9.30 AM, Ujjain Divisional Commissioner Ravindra Pastaur said.
The Chief Minister promised all help to the devotees, he said, adding the injured are being treated in hospitals.
Meanwhile, life on Friday limped back to normal, a day after the nature’s fury at the Kumbh Mela site in this ancient city.
“Normalcy has returned to the holy city fast. Help from adjoining districts is pouring-in,” Pastaur said.
The rain had yesterday made large parts of the Mela ground slushy, making the rescue operation difficult. The authorities had cut off the electricity supply to the area as a precautionary measure.
“Things have been set right and electricity supply has been restored in the city,” Pastaur said.
Around nine lakh devotees and sadhus are in the city taking part in the Kumbh.
Since midnight, the devotees have been taking a dip in the holy Shipra river, he said.
“With the help of people from adjoining districts, we are providing meals and other facilities to the pilgrims,” Pastaur said.
Six persons were killed on Thursday due to collapse of tents and some gates erected at the Kumbh area. Besides, a woman pilgrim was killed in Undasa area when lightning struck her.
The second ‘Shahi Snan’ (royal bath) at the Kumbh is slated for May 9.
A police official had on Thursday said that nearly a third of the tents put up by the pilgrims were blown away in the squall. It will take at least a week to erect them again, he said.
Terming the incident as painful, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has announced an ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakh each to the kin of the deceased.
The state government has spent more than Rs 3,600 crore for developing infrastructure and facilities for the month-long congregation.
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