Over 700 pilgrims were killed and 863 were injured on Thursday in a crush at Mina, outside the Muslim holy city of Makkah, where some two million people are performing the annual haj pilgrimage, Saudi Arabia's civil defence authority said.
The pilgrimage, the world's largest annual gathering of people, has been the scene of deadly disasters in the past, including stampedes, tent fires and riots.
Here, were take a look at some of the stampedes at pilgrimages and religious festivals in India.
Major stampedes at pilgrimages in India over the last decade
About 300 people, mostly women and children, were killed in a stampede on the narrow road leading to the Kalubai temple in Mandradevi, 18 km from Wai in Maharashtra's Satara district.
The Chamunda Devi temple is on a hillock adjoining the Mehrangarh Fort. The victims were either trampled to death or had died of suffocation.
The tragedy had occurred around 9 pm when pilgrims were returning after witnessing the ‘Makarajyothi’ from the grassland area (Pulmedu), about 12 km from Sabarimala.
The stampede broke out on a bridge near the Ratangarh Mata temple in Madhya Pradesh’s Datia district, due to a rumour that a section of the bridge had collapsed.
The tragedy occurred when thousands of pilgrims who were kept back while VIPs performed their pujas, were suddenly let out to the bathing ghat. It exposed the failure of the crowd management systems.
Many of the world's deadliest stampedes occur in India. Yet, few lessons have been learnt since the 1954 Allahabad stampede.
The common thread running through every such tragedy is the utter failure of the authorities to learn any lesson.
Sabarimala has witnessed two major stampedes, claiming a total of 155 lives in the past 14 years.