Even as people across states have been fervently celebrating Navratri and Durga Puja over the past week, reports of somber incidents surfaced. Three people were killed and 64 others injured after a fire broke out in a Durga Puja pandal in Uttar Pradesh’s Bhadohi due to overheating of a halogen light, officials said on Monday.
A digital show was going on at the pandal and 300-400 people were inside it when the fire broke out on Sunday night. The pandal was reduced to ashes, they said.
Bhadohi Durga Puja Pandal Fire: 5 Killed, 60 Injured
A massive fire at a Durga Puja pandal in Uttar Pradesh’s Bhadohi killed three people even as nearly 60 others, 22 of whom suffered severe burn injuries and are critical, were taken to treatment in different hospitals. Bhadohi district magistrate Gaurang Rathi said prima facie, a short circuit appeared to be cause of the fire.
The fire broke out in a Durga Puja pandal in Narthua village, a stone’s throw from Aurai police station, around 9.30 pm on Sunday, District Magistrate Gaurang Rathi said. A total of 67 people were injured in the fire and three of them — Ankush Soni (12), Jaya Devi (45) and Naveen (10) — died. Three of the injured are stated to be serious, Rathi said.
“An incident took place at the time of ‘aarti’ (prayers), which was the peak time. There were around 150 people inside the pandal. Over 30 people suffered burn injuries after which some were rushed to Surya Trauma Centre, Community Health Centre, Gopiganj and Anand hospital,” the official said.
“While a short circuit appears to be the main cause of the fire, we are waiting a confirmation from our technical team, which is investigating the case,” he said.
Youths Thrashed for Entering Garba Pandal in Ujjain
Three youths were thrashed by people for entering a Garba pandal in Ujjain Sunday night. “Some youth belonging to a particular community entered the pandal. People caught them and informed the police. Necessary action is being taken,” Vinod Meena, CSP Ujjain told ANI.
#WATCH | Madhya Pradesh: Three youths were thrashed by people for entering a Garba pandal in Ujjain last nightSome youth belonging to a particular community entered the pandal. People caught them & informed the police. Necessary action is being taken: Vinod Meena, CSP Ujjain pic.twitter.com/EzAqJk6rJX
— ANI MP/CG/Rajasthan (@ANI_MP_CG_RJ) October 2, 2022
The incident comes after Madhya Pradesh government called for checking of identity cards of people entering Garba pandals. Since then, organisers have restricted entry of non-Hindus inside such premises.
The president of Sanskriti Samriti, an organiser in Ujjain, had told Hindustan Times, “Non-Hindus come to garba pandals to create nuisance. We have decided to ban their entry to provide a safe environment.”
Gandhi Look-alike as Asura in Kolkata Puja Pandal Stokes Controversy
A Durga idol in Kolkata in which the ‘Mahisasura’ (Buffalo demon) was replaced by a crudely crafted Mahatma Gandhi-look alike has created controversy on Sunday, the birth anniversary of the father of the nation. Akhil Bharatiya Hindu Mahasabha, organisers of the puja near Ruby Crossing in southwest Kolkata, changed the appearance of the idol that looked like Gandhi following instructions from the police after a complaint was lodged.
The organisers said the similarities were just a coincidence. According to mythology, Goddess Durga slew Mahusasur in an epic battle to end his evil reign.
“The Durga idol that was worshipped here initially had a Mahisasur whose face looked similar to that of Mahatma Gandhi. The similarities are just a coincidence. After photos of it went viral, a police team visited the marquee and asked us to change the face," Akhil Bharatiya Hindu Mahasabha state working President Chandrachur Goswami told PTI.
Mamata Tried Closing Down BJP Corporator’s Puja: BJP
BJP national spokesperson Amit Malviya has claimed that West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee tried to shut down the Santosh Mitra Square Durga Puja in Kolkata organised by a BJP corporator.
Malviya, in a tweet in early hours of Monday, claimed CM Banerjee tried to take the step as the pandal was seeing huge footfall. He added that the police had to back off as public reaction was sharp.
“Mamata Banerjee should know her limits,” Malviya said in his tweet.
6-year-old Beaten to Death in UP for Eating Puja Prasad
A six-year old student was allegedly beaten to death for picking up and eating an apple that was kept for offering to Goddess Durga during puja at his school in Bihar’s Gaya district, an official said.
The incident happended on Tuesday while it was reported to the police on Friday.
The Gaya police arrested a couple in this matter, who were running a residential school named Little Leaders Public School in Baki Bigha village under Wazirganj block in Gaya.