Stampede kills 32 at Hindu festival in India

Most victims are women and children - police are investigating

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The Independent Online

At least 32 people were killed when panicked festival-goers created a stampede at a crowded Hindu festival.

Most of the victims were women and some children, trampled when a live electric wire reportedly fell on to the ground prompting a rush for the gates.

It happened as people were leaving the Dusshera festival at Patna, the capital of Bihar state in eastern India, on Friday evening.

At least 15 people were injured and taken to hospital, according to police chief P.K. Thakur.

He said officers were examining CCTV to determine exactly what had triggered the stampede.

One witness told television channels there weren’t enough lights when the ceremony ended, which could have exacerbated the situation.

Another told local broadcaster NDTV: “There was very little police presence and there were vendors who had put up their stalls at the exit gates, making it more difficult to leave.”

Footage showed shoes, slippers and handbags strewn over the ground.

Additional reporting by Reuters