MINA: The number of Indian casualties has gone up to 14 in the Haj stampede in Saudi Arabia that claimed 717 lives and left over 800 injured, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has said.
India's Ministry of External Affairs have announced that the Emergency Numbers in Makkah will continue to remain open. The following are the numbers:
The toll free number for pilgrims in Kingdom are:
"Our consul general Jeddah reports loss of 14 Indian lives in stampede," the minister said in a tweet. She added that "we have 13 injured in hospital". "The exact number will be known after confirmation by Saudi authorities," she further said.
The second biggest tragedy to hit the annual pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia took place yesterday at 9 AM local time (1130 IST) due to a sudden surge in the number of pilgrims heading to Jamarat for symbolic stoning of the devil by throwing pebbles against three stone walls.
Authorities had yesterday said that four Indians, including a woman and a volunteer, were killed in the stampede which occurred at the intersection of two streets leading to Jamarat, about five kilometres from Makkah.
This is the second worst tragedy to hit the Haj after 1990, when 1,426 pilgrims were killed in a stampede inside a tunnel leading to holy sites. Meanwhile, reports in Jeddah said that 13 Indians are missing following the tragedy.
Just days before Haj, Mecca was struck with another tragedy