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CUSAT Stampede: Bodies of 3 students to be kept for public pay at campus

At least four people including three students, lost their lives in a stampede during a song festival held as part of Tech Fest at the Cochin University of Science and Technology in Ernakulam.

CUSAT Stampede: Bodies of 3 students to be kept for public pay at campus rkn
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First Published Nov 26, 2023, 9:24 AM IST

Kochi: The mortal remains of the students who lost their lives during the stampede at CUSAT will be kept for the public to pay respects in the campus today. At least four people, including three students, lost their lives in a stampede during a song festival held as part of Tech Fest at the Cochin University of Science and Technology in Ernakulam. The deceased have been identified as Athul Thambi (a civil second-year student), a Koothatukulam native; Ann Ruftha (second-year student) from North Paravur; Sara Thomas (second-year student) from Thamarassery and Albin Joseph, a former student of CUSAT from Mundoor, Palakkad. 

Kerala News LIVE: CUSAT Stampede: Delay of opening gates led to accident, says eyewitness

The Department of Higher Education has announced an investigation into the accident during the Techfest organized by School of Engineering students at the CUSAT Campus, Kalamassery. The Education Minister, R. Bindu sought a report from the VC and the Principal Secretary of Higher Education. The Kalamassery police registered a case in the incident. The statements of the injured students will be recorded today. Additionally, the minister stated that the university would cover the medical expenses of the injured individuals. Health Minister Veena George said that the condition of two girls in Aster is critical. There is no concern about the health status of others under treatment. The preliminary conclusion is that the cause of death was suffocation.

The incident happened around 7 pm on Saturday. The students within the Cochin University campus were in the midst of a live musical performance featuring the renowned singer Nikita Gandhi. Students were given identical t-shirts to attend the event, which was held exclusively for engineering students. Only those wearing this were allowed into the event. The event was abruptly disrupted by unexpected rainfall, causing the audience to hurriedly seek shelter. However, the eyewitnesses said that the reason for the incident was the delay in opening the main gates. The injured were rushed to various hospitals after the incident.

Two of them were shifted to a private hospital. The condition of one is critical. Around 32 students with minor injuries are undergoing treatment at the medical college. 15 people are in Kinder Hospital. Many people from outside the campus came to participate in the art programs that were part of the tech fest held every year in Cusat. The primary conclusion is that there was a failure to strengthen the arrangements, anticipating that there would be a large crowd for the music concert. The Kalamassery police have registered a case of unnatural death and started an investigation. The amphitheater where the accident occurred was cordoned off by the police. The police are also examining the mobile footage immediately before the accident.

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