- Stampede occurred at predawn as crowds tried to jump queues to get closer to the temple
- It started at predawn hours as crowds tried to jump queues to get closer to the temple
The stampede occurred at a Hindu temple in Jharkhand state.
It started at predawn hours as crowds tried to jump queues to get closer to the temple, said S.Murugan, a local police superintendent.
Chaos erupted toward the end of a 50,000-person queue as crowds tried to push forward when the temple gates opened, he said.
"All this led to a stampede," he said.
Thousands of devotees flock to the temple every August to offer holy water from the Ganges River to Lord Shiva as part of a religious tradition, Murugan said.
Stampedes are a frequent occurrence during Indian religious festivals.
Last month, dozens died in a stampede at a riverside religious festival
in southern India. During that festival, crowds gather at a river bank as part of a 12-day Hindu bathing ceremony dedicated to river worship.
In 2013, more than 100 people died during a stampede on a bridge
as pilgrims headed to a temple for a Hindu festival. A rumor that the bridge was about to collapse caused panicked people to stampede.