2 children among 11 electrocuted during temple chariot procession in Thanjavur
Eleven people including two children were electrocuted and 15 others were injured in Thanjavur after a temple chariot they were accompanying during a procession came in contact with a high tension transmission line overhead.
According to sources, the tragic incident occurred around 3 am on Wednesday at Thanjavur’s Kalimedu when the Appar temple chariot procession was underway.
The temple car was negotiating a turn and faced some obstacle before being reversed when its dome came in to contact with the overhead line, police and eyewitnesses said.
The deceased were reportedly pulling the chariot when the incident occurred. At least seven people died on the spot. While 15 are being treated at the hospital, the condition of four participants is said to be critical.
A case has been filed in this regard and a probe into the incident is underway.
Expressing his grief over the incident, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a compensation of ₹2 lakh each for the kin of the deceased.
“Deeply pained by the mishap in Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu. My thoughts are with the bereaved families in this hour of grief. I hope those injured recover soon,” he tweeted.
The ex-gratia will be given from the Prime Minister’s National Relief Find. The injured would be given ₹50,000 each.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin who also offered his condolences to the bereaved families has announced a compensation of ₹5 lakh for the kin of the deceased.
With chariot festival attended by thousands of devotees every year, authorities said in usual cases the transmission lines are deactivated when the procession is underway. However, this time the power wasn’t switched off as the chariot wasn’t tall enough, police said.
“…the palanquin was not tall enough to touch the high-transmission line, and thus the power supply was not turned off this time. But it seems the decorative structure increased the height of the palanquin, and consequently, it came into contact with the live wire,” a senior police officer told NDTV.