New Delhi: Four more Indian Haj pilgrims have died in the stampede at Makkah in Saudi Arabia, taking the toll to 18, the government announced on Saturday.
“According to latest information, 18 Indians have died in the tragedy. Our mission is working with the Saudi authorities and family members to confirm the identities of the deceased and expedite the formalities for release of the mortal remains,” the external affairs ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup said in a statement. He also said, “officials on the ground have been working continuously to ascertain information and reach out to family members of missing pilgrims.”
Of the four dead, two are from Gujarat and one each from Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh. The two pilgrims who were from Gujarat were — Hafijabahen Satarsha Diwan and Syed Abdul Hussain. The pilgrim from Jharkhand was Rasul Ali, and from Uttar Pradesh, Moinuddin. According to the list of 14 dead announced on Friday, nine of the victims were from Gujarat, while two each belonged to Jharkhand and Tamil Nadu and one was from Maharashtra. Thirteen Indian pilgrims are among the injured. At least 717 people have been confirmed dead in Thursday’s stampede, the worst tragedy to hit the world’s holiest Muslim pilgrimage in 25 years, while over 800 are injured.