A stampede at one of India’s holiest shrines left at least 12 people dead on New Year’s Day, a local official said.
Thousands of devotees were at the Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine in Jammu, northern India when the stampede happened around 2:30 a.m. local time Saturday.
Another 16 people were injured and have been hospitalized, said Deputy Commissioner of Reasi Charandeep Singh.
The cause of the stampede has not yet been established. A high level inquiry has been ordered by Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir Manoj Sinha.
Tens of thousands of Indians visit the shrine on a daily basis.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was “extremely saddened by the loss of lives due to a stampede at Mata Vaishno Devi Bhawan. Condolences to the bereaved families. May the injured recover soon.”