Overall 90 people sustained injuries on Monday when a part of the canopy collapsed during Prime Minister Narendra Modi address in a rally in West Bengal's Midnapore town, hospital authorities said. The injured were rushed to the Midnapore Medical College and Hospital. The rally was organised by the state unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party.
According to a list released by the Medical Superintendant of the hospital, a total of 90 persons were taken to the hospital, including 66 males and 24 females. However, 14 of them, however, were discharged after primary treatment, and the rest admitted to different departments in the hospital.
State BJP president Dilip Ghosh later said, "If it is found that the mishap happened due to any intentional mistake on anybody's part, then proper action will be taken."
After the rally, Modi visited the injured in the hospital and talked to the doctors treating them.
#WATCH PM Narendra Modi tears up while talking to one of the injured people in hospital. Several were injured after a portion of a tent collapsed during PM's rally in Midnapore earlier today. #WestBengal pic.twitter.com/04AOX9CJri— ANI (@ANI) July 16, 2018
"Modi ji was at the hospital for five-six minutes. He talked to some of the injured and the doctors and then left for Delhi by a helicopter," a BJP leader said.
According to informed sources, the canopy structure had weakened due to incessant rain since the morning. It collapsed as a section of the enthusiastic audience tried to climb up to have a glimpse of the Prime Minister who had by then begun to speak.
Modi stopped for a few minutes when the structure collapsed to urge the audience to be careful, get off the stage and move to a safer area.
"Those who have climbed up, please get down, all of you... please, climb down. Those standing up there, please get down. Don't run," he said.
The Prime Minister was also seen instructing officials present on the stage to ensure speedy and proper treatment for the injured.
Towards the end of his speech, Modi hailed the audience and said he will remember this incident throughout his life.
"The people of Bengal today showed me what courage means. In spite of constant rain, they gathered here in lakhs and even after a part of the structure collapsed, they showed such discipline to take the injured to the hospital while letting the rally continue. I can't thank you people enough for such positivity," he said.
Meanwhile the Centre on Monday sought a report from the West Bengal government on the collapse of a makeshift tent at the venue of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's rally in Midnapore.
The tent was erected next to the main entrance of the rally venue to shelter people from the rain, and the incident happened when Modi was mid-way through his speech.
"The Centre has sought a report from the West Bengal government on the tent collapse incident in Midnapore in which several people were injured," a home ministry spokesperson said.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said the state government would provide all medical assistance to those injured in the incident.
"We pray for the speedy recovery of all those injured at the Midnapore rally today. The government is giving all help for medical treatment," Banerjee wrote on her Twitter handle.
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(With inputs from agencies)