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Jodhpur temple tragedy: 80 feared dead
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Eighty are feared dead and over 250 devotees were reportedly injured in a stampede at the Chamunda Devi temple in the Mehrangarh fort, Jodhpur Tuesday morning, according to NDTV.

On the eve of Navratri, over 10,000 pilgrims gathered to offer prayers.

The reason for the stampede at the temple in a hillock in the famous Jodhpur Fort was not known. Of the dead, some bodies were brought to Mahatma Gandhi Hospital and the remaining to Mathura Das Hospital, Divisional Commissioner Kiran Soni Gupta said.

Following stampede reports, police said that the death toll is likely to rise due to the presence of large crowds.

The Chamunda Mataji Temple in Jodhpur, Rajasthan is situated in the southern end of the Mehrangarh Fort. Chamunda Mataji was the favorite goddess of Rao Jodha.

Earlier, in August 2008, 130 devotees were killed and several injured in a stampede at the Naina Devi temple in Himachal Pradesh. Authorities ordered an investigation into that disaster, which occurred after rumors of a landslide triggered panic among pilgrims who ran down a narrow mountain trail from the Naina Devi temple in Himachal Pradesh state, only to meet thousands of people walking up.

In January 2005, at least 265 Hindu pilgrims, including several women and children, were killed near a remote temple in India's Maharashtra state.

(Xinhua News Agency September 30, 2008)

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