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UP govt pays compensation to stampede victims

UP govt pays compensation to stampede victims

An ex-gratia of Rs 2.5 lakh each to the next of kin of those killed announced.

Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati, who had come under attack for not immediately announcing compensation for victims of stampede at an ashram in Pratapgarh, on Wednesday announced an ex-gratia of Rs 2.5 lakh each to the next of the kin of those killed in the incident.

She also announced Rs 75,000 each for those seriously injured in the stampede which took place on March 5.

"I am deeply moved by the incident and the government has decided to give Rs 2.50 lakh each to those killed in the tragic incident and Rs 75,000 each to grievously injured," Mayawati told reporters here.

The chief minister said the police have arrested three persons, including manager of the ashram Hiranya Chatterjee, Shiv Kumar and Amit in connection with the incident this afternoon.

She said the officers concerned have been directed to ensure that the compensation was distributed among the kins of the victims within two days.

Accusing the Congress-led UPA government of making "false promises", Mayawati said the compensation announced by the Prime Minister was yet to be received by the state.

"The state government was hopeful that the Centre would give maximum assistance to the kin of the victims, but unfortunately the Congress-led government at the Centre with an intention of gaining publicity made false promises," she alleged.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had announced an ex-gratia of Rs two lakh to the kin of those killed and Rs 50,000 to seriously injured in the stampede, which claimed 63 lives.

Mayawati also alleged the announcement made by the Centre was "politically motivated".

"Congress used the incident with a political motive and it has proved that the party does not fulfil its promises and its intention is to earn cheap popularity," Mayawati said.

"BSP functioning is different from rival parties. We do what we say and this is evident from the fact that after hooch tragedies at some places in the state, compensation announced by the government was distributed within two days," she claimed.

"To the contrary though the Centre had announced the ex-gratia not a single penny had been received by the state government," she said.

Mayawati said the state government was deeply hurt with this attitude of the Centre and advised the Congress leaders not to make 'baseless' comments on her government relating to the incident.

"Instead they should apply their energy to ensure that compensation announced by the Centre was released to the state," she said.

Mayawati said divisional commissioner, Allahabad, was inquiring into the stampede at Kripalu Maharaj's Ashram at Mangarh, besides a gazetted police officer was investigating into FIR lodged against ashram authorities.

first published:March 10, 2010, 23:37 IST