NEW DELHI: A fire at the massive Kumbh Mela festival killed a Hindu priest in the second deadly tragedy to mar the gathering in a week, officials said yesterday.
“Fire broke out in one of the tents when some priests were cooking. The tent caught fire, which spread swiftly,” said RS Rathore, an administrator at the festival in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh.
“Twenty tents were gutted and one priest has died,” he said.
Rathore said that strict instructions had been issued beforehand against lighting fires in tents at the festival, which at its height last Sunday drew a crowd of 30 million people, making it the world’s largest gathering.
Thirty-six people were killed on Sunday night in a crush at a train station in Allahabad as pilgrims headed home from the Kumbh Mela.