NEW YORK: Expressing shock over the Mahakumbh stampede which has led to over three dozen deaths, American Hindu religious leader Rajen Zed has criticized Indian authorities for their failure to prevent `frequent occurrences’ of such tragedies..
Zed, who is based in Nevada, said in a statement said that though India was on track to becoming a global power, it cannot handle a domestic event properly and has yet to come up with foolproof plans to manage large crowds.
He said India has refused to learn lessons from the previous stampedes. “It was blight on a country, which prided herself on having joined the league of hottest growth economies,’’ said Zed, who is the chairperson of the Indo-American Leadership Confederation.
“Our hearts and thoughts go out for the victims and their families and we are all in shock over this unimaginable loss,’’ he said, calling for prayers for the victims of the tragedy and their families.
Considering that 30 million people had gathered on Feb 10 to take a holy dip at the Sangam, Zed demanded an apology from India and Uttar Pradesh governments to the people of India for their failure to prevent this preventable tragedy, compensation for the affected and their families, and action against guilty officials.