Athi Varadar tragedy: CM announces solatium for kin of devotees who died

Kancheepuram/Chennai: After four people who visited the Kancheepuram temple to have a darshan of Lord Athi Varadar died, Tamilnadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami, said that all of them had passed away due to pre-existing health conditions.

In the Assembly the CM further announce a solatium of Rs 1 lakh to the kin of the deceased: Two of them were women and three were over 50 years of age. Narayani (55) and Natarajan (61) from Chennai died while returning after dharshan. Although they were rushed to a medical camp, both did not respond to treatment and died. While, another woman (61) from Andhra Pradesh had a history of hypertension, a 47-year old man from Salem suffered an attack. He was rushed to nearby Chengelpet Government Hospital, but passed away.

Also on 3 July, a man from Andhra Pradesh fell down from the steps in the temple and died. The DMK President M K Stalin, leader of opposition party in the Assembly, raised the issue of the deaths and sought proper safety measures for the devotees, as the crowd is set to surge in the coming days

Heavy rush is being witnessed at the Devarajaswamy temple since 27 June after the idol of Lord Athi Varadar was taken out of the temple tank for public viewing. There have been numerous complaints that the temple lacked proper facilities for the devotees.

However, Palaniswamy clarified that all precautionary measures were taken by the authorities but Thursday being an auspicious day, over 1.7 lakh people visited the temple and the authorities did not expect such a rush.

He further cited a a statement issued by the district administration advising elderly, those with illness from against visiting the temple.