Hathras stampede probe blames Satsang organisers & local administration

Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath during a review meeting with Hatharas Police

Image credit UP Info

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Hathras stampede probe report doesn’t rule out conspiracy

By Our Special Correspondent

New Delhi, July 9: The judicial commission report set by the Uttar Pradesh government on Hathras stampede has put the blames on the ‘Satsang’ organisers and the local administration. Hathras incident occurred due to organizers’ negligence, while they failed to make adequate arrangements for the crowd, said the report.

“Local police and administration did not take the event seriously, as they failed to properly inform senior officials,” added the report submitted to the UP government on Tuesday.

“Based on the investigation committee’s report, six officials, including the SDM, CO, and Tehsildar, have been suspended. Judicial commission has commenced proceedings for an in-depth investigation of the Hathras accident. The organizers had involved individuals for crowd management without police verification,” said the UP government in an official statement.

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The SIT of ADG Zone Agra and the Divisional Commissioner of Aligarh, established immediately after the accident during the Satsang on July 2 in Sikandrarao of Hathras district, inspected the incident site on July 2, 3, and 5.

“During the investigation, statements were collected from a total of 125 individuals, including administrative and police officials, the general public, and eyewitnesses. Additionally, copies of news articles related to the incident, on-site videography, photographs, and video clippings were reviewed,” added the UP government in the media statement.

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The key findings of the investigation committee’s report are as follows:

  • In the preliminary investigation, the SIT has held the event organizers primarily responsible for the accident based on eyewitness accounts and other evidence.
  • Based on the investigation and actions taken so far, the investigation committee has not ruled out the possibility of a major conspiracy behind the accident and has emphasized the need for a thorough investigation.
  • The investigation committee has also found the program organizer and tehsil-level police and administration guilty. The local SDM, CO, Tehsildar, Inspector, and Chowki Incharge have been held responsible for negligence in performing their duties.
  • The program was not taken seriously by the said officials, and senior officials were not even informed. The SIT has recommended action against the concerned officials.
  • The Sub-district Magistrate of Sikandrarao granted permission for the event without inspecting the venue and did not inform senior officials.
  • The said officials did not take the program seriously, and senior officials were also not informed. The SIT has recommended action against these officials. Consequently, the government has suspended the Sub- District Magistrate of Sikandrarao, Police Circle Officer of Sikandrarao, Station Officer of Sikandrarao, Tehsildar of Sikandrarao, Chowki Incharge of Kachora, and Chowki Incharge of Pora.
  • The organizers obtained permission for the event by concealing facts. The conditions applicable for the permission were not followed. They did not make adequate and smooth arrangements despite inviting an unexpected crowd, nor did they comply with the conditions set by the local administration for the program.
  • People associated with the organizing committee have been found guilty of spreading chaos. Individuals added by the committee without proper police verification contributed to the disorder.
  • The organizing committee misbehaved with the police and attempted to prevent the local police from inspecting the program venue.
  • The Satsang performers and the crowd were allowed to mingle without any security arrangements. Despite the large crowd, no barricading or passage arrangements were made, and when the accident occurred, members of the organizing committee fled from the scene.

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