At least 11 people died on Friday after consuming the religious offering at a temple in Karnataka’s Chamarajanagar, ANI reported, citing the chief minister’s office. Nearly 70 people were undergoing treatment at a hospital, Chamarajanagar Superintendent of Police Dharmendra Kumar Meena said. Twelve of them are in a critical condition.
District Health Officer KH Prasad told Scroll.in that the sick people were taken to a primary health centre after they started showing symptoms of food poisoning like vomiting and diarrhoea around 11.30 am. But the health centre referred them to bigger hospitals in the area as the symptoms were severe.
He said samples of the offering served at the Sulvadi Kichchugutti Maramma temple in Hanur taluk was sent to a laboratory for testing.
An unidentified official said the religious offering, which purportedly got mixed with some toxic substance, was distributed during a foundation stone laying ceremony, PTI reported.
Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy expressed shock over the incident and asked medical authorities to provide the required treatment to those affected, ANI reported. “There is an unfortunate food poisoning incident in Kamgere village,” the chief minister told reporters. “The principal secretary and commissioner has instructed Mandya and Mysuru officials to provide help to Chamarajanagar health administration.”
Kumaraswamy said the programme officer concerned is coordinating the ambulance services. The police are investigating the matter.
The state government has announced a compensation of Rs 5 lakh to the families of each of the deceased and promised to ensure proper medical treatment for the others, ANI reported.