States & UTs

    Hathras stampede: 4-time rise in autopsies in neighbouring Etah, asphyxia caused most deaths

    The Hawk
    July3/ 2024
    Last Updated:

    The Etah district hospital, which usually handles four to five post-mortems daily, performed an unprecedented number of autopsies as 27 bodies were brought in.

    Hathras stampede relatives

    Etah: Asphyxia due to compression was the leading cause of death among the victims of the Hathras stampede who were brought to the district hospital in neighbouring Etah on Tuesday, a senior doctor said.

    The hospital performed four times the usual number of autopsies in a day in the aftermath of the stampede, he said.

    As many as 27 bodies were brought to the mortuary of the district hospital here after the stampede at Hathras' Phulrai village on Tuesday. The overall toll stood at 121 and bodies were taken to various hospitals in nearby areas including Etah and Aligarh.

    "Of the 27 bodies brought here, the post-mortem of 19 was concluded while the mortuary staff prepared for the 20th autopsy around midnight," Etah's Additional Chief Medical Officer Dr. Ram Mohan Tiwari told PTI.

    Six bodies remained to be identified, he said.

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    "Asphyxia due to compression was found to be the cause of death in almost all the cases," Tiwari said, adding a majority of the victims were women in the 40-50 age group.

    Asked about the situation at the hospital, the senior doctor said they see four to five post mortems on an average daily in the district.

    The count of Tuesday's bodies was "much more" than the average, prompting hospital staff and officials to work beyond routine hours, he added.

    On victims undergoing treatment, he said there were four patients brought here of whom one was discharged after primary aid itself.

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    Two others are out of danger and one pregnant woman is undergoing treatment but is stable, Tiwari added.

    Police Circle officer (Sakeet area) Sanjay Kumar Singh said 21 of the 27 bodies brought to Etah government hospital were identified by midnight.

    Once the bodies are identified, they would be handed over to the families after due procedures, Singh said.

    Among the fatalities were mostly women as devotees suffocated to their deaths and bodies piled atop each other in the worst such tragedy in recent years.

    The stampede took place as the 'satsang' here ended. Some accounts said people slipped in the slush as they ran after the preacher's car, triggering the stampede.

    Around 2.5 lakh of devotees had gathered in the Hathras district's Phulrai village for the 'satsang', police said.