Chief Minister V. S. Achuthanandan said in Kannur on Saturday morning that the Cabinet would meet shortly to decide on compensation from the State government for the victims of the stampede at Sabarimala.

Expressing grief over the accident, the Chief Minister said that the collector had been asked to submit a detailed report on the stampede.

Pilgrim flow to Sabarimala was increasing year after year and it was unfortunate that an incident of this magnitude had occurred. Additional Chief Secretary K. Jayakumar was coordinating the relief activities.

He said that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had announced a compensation of Rs. 1 lakh to the next of kin of each of the victims. This had been communicated to the Chief Secretary P. Prabhakaran. Finance Minister T. M. Thomas Isaac told the media in Vandiperiyar that five people including a few children were missing. Some people were feared to have strayed into the forests and searches were on to find the missing people. So far, 102 bodies had been recovered and no more bodies were lying on the grasslands.

PTI adds:

President Pratibha Patil today condoled the death of Sabarimala pilgrims in a stampede at Pullumedu in Kerala’s Idukki district.

In a letter to the Kerala chief minister and governor, she expressed grief over the tragedy.

Patil wished a speedy recovery to all those injured in the incident that took place yesterday.

Over 100 pilgrims returning from the shrine were killed and several injured in the stampede.

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