Kamal Nath Threatens To File PIL In MP High Court Over Indore Stepwell Tragedy


Indore:  Madhya Pradesh Congress chief Kamal Nath on Saturday alleged that illegal constructions carried out on the stepwell led to the Indore temple tragedy in which 36 people lost their lives.

The local civic body did not pull down the unauthorised constructions on the stepwell due to the pressure from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), he claimed and threatened to file a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Madhya Pradesh High Court if these constructions were not removed within seven days.

Nath, who visited the accident site of Beleshwar Mahadev Jhulelal temple in Patel Nagar, said if the Congress is voted to power in the upcoming state Assembly polls, his party-led government would will enact a law for mandatory security audit of public places in the state.

The Congress leader also visited the private hospital, where those injured in the incident are undergoing treatment, to enquire about their health.

Thirty-six persons, including 21 women and two children, died after the floor of the temple, built over the stepwell, caved in on Thursday. A ‘havan’ (fire ritual) was going on at the place on the occasion of Ram Navami when the mishap occurred.

After the accident, the administration has closed the main gate of the temple and the route to the stepwell by putting an iron sheet.

“This incident is a result of illegal constructions done on the stepwell, which has tarnished the image of Indore in the country and the world. If these illegal constructions are not removed within seven days, we will file a PIL in the high court to get them removed,” he told reporters.

The former Madhya Pradesh chief minister alleged that the Indore Municipal Corporation (IMC) did not remove the illegal constructions around the stepwell due to political pressure from the ruling BJP.

“Indore is called a ‘smart city’, but the local administration did not have the necessary equipment to rescue the people who fell into the stepwell after the accident,” he said.

He said the Army was called in for the rescue operation 12 hours after the mishap, but it was too late by then.

On Friday, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan paid a visit to the hospital to know the condition of the injured, and also visited the site of the tragedy.

Talking about it, Nath said CM Chouhan’s visit was just a “show-off” and formality.

Chouhan failed to ease the pain of the victims’ relatives, he alleged.

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