It’s been three years that the tragedy struck at the Godavari river’s Pushkar Ghat in Rajahmundry. The stampede caused at the ghat claimed 29 lives and left several persons injured. The stampede was caused mainly by the hunger for publicity on the part of the powers that be. They made the countless pilgrims wait outside under hot sun as they were busy shooting a film on Godavari pushkarams in the ghat. The people grew restless and began jostling leading to an unprecedented and tragic stampede.
As many as 29 families were left to live with the loss of their dearest ones. Several children were orphaned due to the tragedy that was wholly avoidable if only the rulers had some concern for the commoners. What is more disconcerting is that even though three years have elapsed, a closure is nowhere in sight. The Somayajulu committee probing into the cause of deaths, did submit the report. But, we do not know what has happened to it. Though senior advocate Muppalla Subba Rao represented the victims, Chandrababu has never appeared before the committee.
What more, no one knows what has happened to the report that the collector had sent to the chief secretary. There was a complaint filed with the Human Rights Commission, but nothing tangible emerged from it.
For the 29 bereaved families, however, it is an unending wait for justice and a decent closure of the case. The rulers who caused the stampede are not just going scot free, they are going round the town pontificating about everything and anything.