इंडियन आवाज़     20 Apr 2024 01:41:41      انڈین آواز

14 Indians among 719 killed in Hajj stampede in Saudi Arabia

(Last Updated On: 25/09/2015)

13 injured Indians are under treatment


Haj Tragedy: Death toll climbs to 717 in Mina, Over 850 pilgrims injuredAt least 14 Indians have lost their lives in stampede during the Haj pilgrimage in Mina near the Islamic holy city of Makkah. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj informed this through social networking site Twitter today. Ms Swaraj said, Indian Consul General in Jeddah has also reported that 13 injured Indian are in the hospital. She said that the exact number would be known after confirmation by Saudi authorities.

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman has ordered a safety review of the Haj pilgrimage after at least 719 people died in a stampede at Mina. Another 863 people were injured in the incident, which occurred as two million pilgrims were taking part in the Haj’s last major rite.

The king said there is a need to improve the level of organisation and management of movement of pilgrims. A commission to investigate the stampede has also been formed by the Saudi government.

The accident occurred around 11.30 AM Indian time Thursday. Maj Gen Mansour al-Turki, a spokesman for the Saudi Interior Ministry said the stampede occurred when two large groups of pilgrims converged from different directions on to one street. This is the second disaster to strike Mecca in two weeks, after a crane collapsed at the Grand Mosque, killing 109 people.

External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup said that Indian Mission in Jeddah is continuously monitoring situation. He said, Indian doctors deployed in Mecca for Haj have been asked to work with government hospitals to take care of the injured.

Emergency numbers in Mecca are 00966125458000, 00966125496000. Toll free number for pilgrims in the Kingdom is 8002477786.

President Pranab Mukherjee, Vice President Mohd. Hamid Ansari and Prime Minister Narendra Modi have expressed sadness over the tragic incident and extended condolences to Government of Saudi Arabia and families of the deceased pilgrims. Congress President Sonia Gandhi also expressed deep shock and distress over the tragedy.

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