Case filed after stampede at Kolkata Durga Puja pandal

Kolkata, Oct 19 (IANS) Kolkata Police on Monday took suo motu congnizance of a mini-stampede at a marquee that boasted of the “world’s tallest idol of Goddess Durga” and filed a case against the organisers on charge of violating rules and regulations.

According to police, at least three people were injured in the stampede on Sunday night at Deshapriya Park marquee though eyewitnesses claimed over a dozen people were injured.

“We have filed a first information report against the puja committee for violating Calcutta High Court norms. The height of the pandal here is well above the stipulated 40 feet set by the court,” a senior city police officer said.

Following the stampede, city Police Commissioner Surojit Kar Purokayastha late Sunday night claimed the organisers had not secured necessary permissions.

The Deshapriya Park marquee saw a huge publicity build-up for months, with advertisements in the media and on billboards claiming it had set up the tallest Durga idol in the world.

The idol, made of cement and fibre glass, has been placed outside the pandal under an open sky due to its massive size.

The organisers even wrote to the Guinness World Records, requesting it to recognise the statue as the world’s tallest Durga idol (between 80 feet and 100 feet).

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee inaugurated the puja festivities at the pandal on Saturday.

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